Parachute Storytime Revisited

A while back I posted about a Parachute Storytime I did as my baby storytime theme. It had been a while since I used that storytime, so I decided to dust off my parachute and try it again. This time I did it with several different age groups and added a few new songs to the mix.

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I have now done this with babies, toddlers, preschoolers, and families of many age groups. It works with all of them. For babies, I recommend parents sitting Baby on their laps and letting them just feel the air and watch the parachute go up and down. For toddlers, preschoolers, and school agers, I let them hold on to the parachute and participate in the movement. You have to know your audience, though–that is the key!

For the most part, I followed my previous plan. This time we started by shaking the parachute fast and slow, up and down several times to warm up and go over the “rules.” I also started with the book Jump by Scott M. Fischer. It gets the children excited and warmed up. I like the addition of the book. The children know it’s time to start and get excited every time they get to jump in the air. I also added two new rhymes.

London Bridge
(As we sang the song, we moved the parachute up and down.)

Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed
(I couldn’t find five monkey puppets, so I had the children use their imagination while I placed five soft blocks on the parachute. For the toddlers, I used a smaller parachute, so I used the finger puppet monkeys.)

London Bridge was fun, but many children don’t know the rhyme so we did it twice and moved on. Five Little Monkeys is a little long, so depending on your group, you may want shorten it to just three monkeys. If you read the original plan, Toast in the Toaster and Popcorn are still the rhymes we repeat the most.

Next time I do this storytime, I plan to add in a little finger warm-up with Wiggle Them.

Storytime Song Cube

I love storytime. I love storytime for babies. I love storytime for toddlers. I love storytime for preschoolers. I love storytime for school-agers. I will even do a storytime for adults–although I haven’t had the opportunity to do that, yet–and I’m not sure what it would look like, but I’m sure it would be fun! It’s a half hour of my day where I get to read stories, sing fun songs, and dance around like I’m five again. It’s true. Oh! And I get to teach parents and caregivers about the benefits of reading and how to have fun with reading at home.

cube

Unfortunately, over the last year , I haven’t done many storytimes due to the nature of my new position. I do try to do it once a  month at my Young Moms’ Club program. And so, this week I finally had the chance to test out my new Song Cube. I found the idea here at so tomorrow. I have been wanting to use this idea since I saw her post last year. So this week, I made the song cards, stuffed them into the cube slots, and added it to my storytime set up.

We started with our standard welcome song, “Wiggle Them, Wiggle Them,” and then I read a story. After the book, I told the children (there were four this week), they would each get a chance to roll the cube and pick the song. We did two in a row. We read one more story and then finished with two more songs from the cube. The children were excited to see what song we would do.

The cubes came in a three pack with storytelling photo cards. I think next month we will use the other two cubes to make up  a story.

Snowball, Snowball

Last week, we celebrated winter during storytime. We sang songs, played Snowman I Spy with colors, read a few stories, built a paper snowman and made ice cream in a bag. It was so much fun! This was one of my favorite games/rhymes we did. All of the children had the opportunity to participate!

mittens

Snowball, Snowball
Snowball, Snowball
Big and round
Behind which mitten can you be found?
I had the children each take a guess. Luckily, they didn’t find it until the second to last mitten–otherwise this would have been a very short game!

To make the pieces, I used the Ellison mitten cut-out on felt and some fabric puffy paint.