I've been making my December outreach story time visits, and with the end of the calendar year comes the time to vote for a favorite Building Block Picture Book Award nominee. My December story times include the last few nominees, a holiday book, and voting for favorite Building Block.
Opening Song: "Open, Shut Them"
Story: Mitchell's License by Hallie Durand
Remember all those times you sat on a caregiver's shoulders and felt absolutely on top of the world? That's what Mitchell likes to do, and whenever he sits on his dad's shoulders, he becomes the driver of a really great car. Kids love the silliness and whimsy of this title.
Song: "The Wheels on the Bus"
You guessed it: I whipped out my ukulele for this one. I took crowd suggestions for the different parts of the bus, and we sang a few rounds before hitting the brakes on this song.
Story: Hugless Douglas by David Melling
Poor Douglas! He's just woken up from a nice, long, hibernation nap, and all he wants is a hug. Getting that hug seems to be rather difficult, though, as he can't seem to find the perfect hugger. He tries a boulder, a tree, a shrub, and a rather displeased owl before finally finding the person who gives perfect hugs.
Story: Pete the Cat Saves Christmas by Eric Litwin
Pete is a perenially favorite among my outreach story time crowds, and since all the centers I visit confirmed that they do celebrate Christmas, I opted to share this fun holiday story with my groups. Ever wonder what would happen should Santa be unable to handle Christmas? Never fear--Pete the Cat is here, and he's got a song to help him bring joy to all the little girls and boys!
Voting: With the help of the teachers at the child care centers I visit, all of the children get the chance to vote for their favorie of the ten Building Block Picture Book Award nominees that we shared over the course of the fall. I have the cover of each book printed on a sheet of paper; voting for a particular book means going to stand by that picture (this is the only way I've found to keep the kids from voting for more than one title--they can only physically be in one place, so the vote by proximity). I tally the votes and say I'll report back with the big winner in January.
Song: "Jingle Bells"
I had a child request last month that I learn "Jingle Bells" on my ukulele, and that's what I did. There's nothing like finishing off a story time with a favorite tune to which everyone knows the words.