Over in the Arctic Where the Cold Winds Blow by Marianne Berkes

Introduction: Our next book is called Over in the Arctic Where the Cold Winds Blow by Marianne Berkes. We can make the actions and sounds of the animals as we go along.


Read or Sing the book. After completing the book, come back to the page with the owls.
There are some interesting words on this page. There is a mother snowy owl. What color is the owl? And her little owlets seven. A baby owl is called an owlet. Let's say that together. It says here that the owls glide. Let me see how the mother owl glides (Let them show you wide wings with their arms). And how does a baby owlet glide? (wings/arms not so wide). What does flying look like? What does gliding look like? (more smooth, soar) and what does swooping look like? (from high to low--plunging, lunging, diving).

Early Literacy Aside--Example: Songs can give us words we might not hear in regular conversation. In this book, having fun with the action words can help children distinguish between words of similar meanings. This helps children learn small differences in the meanings of words which builds their vocabulary and helps them later understand what they read.

Hickety Pickety Bumble Bee

"Hickety Pickety Bumble Bee" Hickety Pickety bumble bee Who can say their name for me? First child’s name. Clap it. (Clap out the syllables in the child’s name.) Whisper it. (Whisper the syllables.) No sound. (Mouth the syllables.) Hickety pickety bumblebee, Who can say their name for me?

Early Literacy Aside--Example--Phonological Awareness
By clapping out and singing children's names, they hear words slowed down and they hear the parts of words, the syllables. This will later help them as they try to sound out words when they learn to read. The kids love the song, and parents tell me that they are clapping out the syllables to other family members names too.

Submitted by Marie Rogers, Hardin County Public Library in KY

Sing by Joe Raposo

Early Literacy Aside--Explain: Some of us can sing well, others not so well. Some of us like to sing whether we can or not and others would rather not sing. Did you know that singing is one way to help children learn the sounds in language which will then help them hear sounds as they learn to sound out words? Songs have a distinct note for each syllable so children hear the rhythm of language and hear words broken down into parts.
Early Literacy Aside--Example: Our next book is a songbook. It uses the words to the song as the book itself. It's called Sing by Joe Raposo. I often feel like the third bird! I hope you do too. Let's see what happens when one of the three birds can't sing. We can all sing the words together and notice how songs help with hearing sounds in words.

Read/sing the book first describing what is happening in the wordless pictures.

Rock a Bye Baby

Song as lead in to book: Rock a Bye Baby[Adults rock baby back and forth] Rock a bye baby on the tree top, When the wind blows, the cradle will rock. When the bough breaks the cradle will fall, And I'm there to catch you, cradle and all.

Early Literacy Aside--Example: When we sing to babies, they hear language slowed down which makes it easier for them to hear the sounds in words. Even thugh we may not sing to our children for this purpose, it is the beginning of helping them to later sound out words when they later learn to read.

Jane Klein, Chester County (PA) Library System

Night/Noche Storytime Handout

Early Literacy Aside--Empower: I have a handout for you on the topic of our storytime today--night. It has some book titles which I have also displayed here.  I hope you'll like the suggestions of ideas and techniques you can do with your children at home to help develop their pre-reading skills, just as you saw me do in the storytime. You are with your children more often than I am so you have many opportunities to use some of these ideas. Let me know which ideas you enjoy doing with your children.Storytime Handout for storytime on the theme of Night/Noche Handout in English  Nighthandoutkc Handout in Spanish  Nochehandoutkc

Submitted by Katie Cunningham

Ideas que  le ayudarán a fomentar la alfabetización temprana en casa:  Al final de este parrafo encontrará un folleto con el tema de la noche. El folleto habla de algunos libros que también se presentan aquí.  Espero que estas ideas y técnicas le ayuden en casa a sus ninos a desarrollar las habilidaes necesarias para que puedan aprender a leer, así como lo ha visto en nuestra hora de cuentos.  Usted pasa mas tiempo consus hijos del que ellos pasan conmigo, así es que tendrá muchas oportunidades de usar algunas de estas ideas.

Song in Spanish

Here is a song that is fun to sing in English, Spanish or both, to the tune of "Frere Jacques."Esta canción es divertida cantar en inglés, español, o ambos, al tuno de "Frere Jacques."

Hello children.                  Hola niños. How are you?                   ¿Como están? Very well thank you.        Muy bien gracias. How about you?               ¿Y Usted?

Although today we are having  fun singing songs in two languages, talk with your children in the language  that is most comfortable for you. It is best for children to know one language  spoken fluently. If children know one language well, they can learn another one  more easily. If you are fluent in more than one language you can choose which  language to talk with your child in.

Aunque hoy  nos divertimos por cantar en dos idiomas, recuerde hablar con sus niños en el  idioma que usted mejor sepa.  Es mejor para  los niños saber un idioma con fluidez.  Si los niños saben bien un idioma, es más fácil para ellos aprender  otro.  Si usted habla con fluidez más que un idioma, puede elegir en cual quisiera hablar con su niño.

by Katie Cunningham, http://bilingualchildrensprogramming.blogspot.com

Now It's Time to Read a Book Song

Now It's Time to Read a Book: to the tune of London Bridge Is Falling Down:Now it’s time to read a book, Read a book, Read a book Now it's time to read a book I’ll read a book to you. This song can be used as a transition into reading the next book to help instill print motivation, the enjoyment of books. Songs help children make smooth transitions from one activity to another. As children come to know the song, they can sing it at home when they want to read to a parent/adult or when they want an adult to read to them.


Sing songs in English and in at least one other language during storytime.Early Literacy Aside--Empower: Adults, you can sing anywhere about anything in any language! Singing helps children hear the smaller sounds in words to help them sound out words later. Also many songs have new words for them to learn which will help them know the meanings of words when they get to school.

Randi Kay Stephens, Sacramento (CA) Public Library

Sing your own songs

Early Literacy Aside--Explain: Singing with your children helps them to hear words broken into smaller parts because there is a different note for each syllable. Hearing these smaller parts of words will help them later to sound out words.Early Literacy Aside--Empower: We sang some songs today in storytime. You can make up your own songs and sing about the things you do everyday. Singing helps children hear words broken down into part and you can do this throughout the day in fun ways. Heather Bratt

Jack and Jill Rhyme and Song

Nursery Rhyme: Jack and Jill
Jack and Jill went up the hill
To fetch a pail of water
Jack fell down
And broke his crown
And Jill came tumbling after.
Preparation: Have the words to the rhyme up on a chart. Have the group say, not sing, the words. Then have the group sing the rhyme. Ask the adults what differences they noticed when singing it vs. saying it.
Early Literacy Aside--Example: Singing slows down language so that children can hear the smaller sounds in words. This helps children later to sound out the words when they learn to read.

Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed (Song)

Early Literacy Aside--Explain: Singing songs together is an enjoyable way to start developing expressive language, talking! Young children repeat what we say. This is the first step for them to express their own thoughts. Songs like this one, Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed, have a repeated phrases which makes it easier for toddlers to learn. Let’s try it.Song: Five Little Monkeys Five little monkeys jumping on the bed. One fell off and bumped his head. Mama called the doctor and the doctor said, "No more monkeys jumping on the bed." Repeat for 4, 3, 2, 1 [For babies, bounce child to the rhythm. For older children, use five fingers to represent the monkeys and make appropriate actions.]

Scarecrow, Scarecrow Rhyme and Dance

Early Literacy Aside--Explain: Here's a rhyme that you can do anytime and it reinforces rhyming words which develops phonological awareness while having fun at the same time.Do Scarecrow, Scarecrow activity Children stand up with arms bent at elbows like a scarecrow and head tilted. Actions to words. Scarecrow, Scarecrow, turn around Scarecrow, Scarecrow, jump up and down Scarecrow, Scarecrow, raise your arms high Scarecrow, Scarecrow, wink one eye Scarecrow, Scarecrow, bend your knees Scarecrow, Scarecrow, flap in the breeze Scarecrow, Scarecrow, climb into bed Scarecrow, Scarecrow, rest your head.

Submitted by Terri Stringer, Vandalia Branch, Dayton Metro (OH) Public Library

Bop 'Til You Drop Song by Mr. Al

Early Literacy Aside--Explain: Research shows that there are early literacy skills that influence a child's ability to learn to read. Today, you will probably notice several places where I demonstrate examples of narrative skills, which is the ability to describe things and events and to tell stories. When you develop this skill, it will help your children understand what they reads later.Song: Bop 'Til You Drop Go through the sequence of motions that are in the song, Bop 'Til You Drop Early Literacy Aside--Example: Singing songs that have a certain order is one great way for children to remember the sequence or order of things. They will use the same skill when they retell a story. They learn how stories work. Early Literacy Aside--Empower: One thing that you can do at home to develop narrative skills is to describe regular activities such as taking a bath--"first we'll get out the towel, then we'll put the water in the tub and add the bubbles/toys, then we'll take off your clothes, and get in the water. We can scrub our toes, our ears . . . " With older kids, let THEM describe the sequence of events with prompts like, "What do we have to do before we put the bubbles in? or "What do we do next?"

Animal Boogie by Debbie Harter

Early Literacy Aside--Explain: Researchers have found that one of the early literacy skills is phonological awareness. This is the ability to hear and play with the smaller sounds in words, like rhyming and hearing the beginning sounds of words. Today I'll be pointing out ways you can help your children with this skill.Early Literacy Aside--Example: Our next book is one we can sing. Listen to all the rhymes in this book. Singing slows down language and rhyming breaks down words into parts. Both of these help your children hear the smaller sounds in words. You can also think of other words that rhyme, or add extra verses at the end. Read the book Animal Boogie by Debbie Harter.


Early Literacy Aside--Explain: Singing songs is  one good way for children to become aware of the different sounds that make up words. We call this phonological awareness. Singng helps them get a feel for the rhythm of language and how words are divided into syllables because there is a different note for each syllable. This will help them sound out words when they learn to read. Submitted by Cindy Christin, Bozeman (MT) Public Library

Old MacDonald Had a Farm Song

Early Literacy Aside--Explain: Songs are a great way to incorporate the early literacy skill, phonological awareness. Hearing and learning animal sounds helps your children hear the smaller sounds in words and singing emphasizes different syllables. This helps your children later to sound out words. Submitted by Wendy B. Rancier, Roanoke County (VA) Public Library

Row Your Boat

During several consecutive storytimes you would choose a song to sing every time. For example, I chose Row Your Boat.In each storytime we sing the song correctly: Row, row, row your boat; gently down the stream Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily; life is but a dream. Then we sing the song again in a silly way, changing the first sound of each word: Bow, bow, bow, bour boat, bently, bown be bream Berrily, berrily, berrily, berrily; bife bis but ba bream. Then we sing it again correctly. Early Literacy Aside--Example: Singing nonsense songs like this help children hear the smaller sounds in words, in a fun way! Try it with different songs. Being able to change the first sound in a word is part of phonological awareness.

The next week when we sing Row Your Boat changing the first sound of each word to a different sound. For example: Low, low, low lour loat; lently lown le leam Lerrily, lerrily, lerrily, lerrily; life lis lut la leam. Sometimes the children like to make their own changes and sing to the group.