Thursday, January 19, 2012

M is for.. Mice and Mustaches!

     Welcome back!  I hope the new year finds everyone healthy, wealthy, and above all, HAPPY!  I always love that start of a new year.  First of all, I always feel rejuvenated.  There is something about taking a couple of weeks off between programs that really makes me appreciate what a great job I have.  Second, the new year always bring new kids to my story time classes!  Although I love my regulars who have attended my classes from the beginning, meeting new kids and their parents are always fun, too!
     I don’t know about you, but the first week back to story time after a long break is always interesting.  This year, it seemed as if 2012 brought my brand new kids!  My shy kids were suddenly outgoing, my outgoing kids were suddenly shy.  The kids who have been coming forever seemed to forget who I was!  Once we got back into the normal routine, they all seemed to liven back up!
     Just because it’s a new year does not mean I am changing gears in terms of our alphabet mission!  I will continue with the letter-a-week theme until we get through the entire alphabet!  This means that this week we conquered the letter Mm!  There are lots of M-words, but I chose a simple one, mouse! EEEEKK! There are tons of great mice books in our library and I think the card looks so cute!

Materials:  Index card with capital M, 2 googly eyes, pink pom-pom, pipe cleaner tail, and crayons

Front of card

Back of card

1)    Color the capital L to look like a mouse

2)    Trace the capital and lower case Mm on the back of the card.

3)    Glue the eyes to the M. Glue the pop-pop on as the nose. Glue the tail on the bottom. Add whiskers and ears to complete your mouse!

     As usual, I continued with a second craft for my 4-6 year olds.  When I first started doing multiple craft with this age group, I thought it might be a bit too much.  My main thought for doing a second craft was that it would really reinforce the alphabet letter of the week.  Well, after one semester, I can honestly say I am glad that I did it.  My kids love crafts.  It is great to do the alphabet letter first and then the “fun, creative” craft second.  Thus without further ado, the second letter Mm craft!

     That’s right… MUSTACHES!  How fun is that?  All I did for this one was print mustaches on cardstock and cut them out.  The kids then colored them however they wanted and finished by adding a craft stick!  VOILA!  A mustache!
     My New Year’s resolution for story times was to start picking better books.  I know that the books I pull every week are age appropriate and fun, however, my kids just aren’t responding to them the way I would like.  Thus, for the next year, I am going to place a greater focus on picking books that I know they will love.  I want to have a year full of book-laughter!  Thus, this week I went with the following, Shout! Shout It Out! by Denise Fleming and Mustache! By Mac Bennett! 

     Fleming’s book is great for the 2-5 year old crowds because it involves a bit of call-and-response.  I don’t know about your kids, however, the kids that come to my classes always have a case of the wiggles!  This just gives them a good excuse to shout out the answers as I point to them.  As for Barnett’s book, well, who doesn’t love a good book about mustaches?  Especially when the whole plot revolves around drawing mustaches on pictures of the king?

     Another thing I have decided to try to do this year is add a little more kid-friendly contemporary music!  Songs for kids are great, but there are a lot of popular songs out there that can work well with my themes, too.  Brian Setzer’s song, “Rockin’ at the House of Mouse,” fit the agenda easily!  Was this a song written expressly for children?  No!  But does it work! FOR SURE!  I was really excited to add this element and I hope I am able to continue to find great songs!
    Sidenote: I had NO IDEA that this was the theme song for a Mickey Mouse show until I did this YouTube search!

     Well, that seems to be it for this week's installment!  If you haven't all ready, take a look at this week's video!  Sammy and I had a lot of fun with out mustaches!  Hope to see you next week when we cover the letter N!  Any guess as to what it may be?

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