Friday, September 17, 2010

Storytime Sharing: You Can Raise a Reader

We love sharing age appropriate books, songs and rhymes from our storytimes. We strive to teach the six early literacy skills at storytimes and offer suggestions for how you can reinforce these skills at home.

Apples, Apples, Apples!

It's already cooler outside, there's a crispness to the air and fall decorations are out and so this week in Toddler Storytime we learned about apples! We started our fun by looking at real red, green, yellow and mixture of color apples! We read the book, Apple Farmer Annie by Monica Wellington which introduced us to a busy apple farmer who harvests various apples and has many uses for them, such as applesauce, apple cider and selling them at the market. This book emphasized the pre-reading skill of vocabulary. When reading this book to your child, you can point to the signs and labels in the illustrations, such as butter, apple cider, applesauce, baking soda, etc, taking time to read them. This will also help your child with print awareness, which includes noticing print all around them and that print has meaning.

Show your child this apple fingerplay:

The Apple Tree
Way up high in the apple tree (arms up high)
Two red apples smiled at me. (hold up 2 fingers and point to yourself)
I shook that tree as hard as I could (shaking motion with hands)
And down came the apples, (arms in the air, falling)
Ummm, they were good! (rub tummy)

Then, in the Apple Pie Tree by Zoe Hall, we take a journey through the seasons to learn as an apple tree grows leaves, then blossoms which turn to tiny green buds, which grow into ripe fruit to be picked. The story finishes with the family sharing their yummy baked apple pie.

For Preschool children getting ready for a school trip to the orchard, read Apple Countdown by Joan Holub.

We sang along to the song, Five Green Apples from Friends Forever by Sharon, Lois and Bram and moved our colorful scarves along to Apples and Bananas from New Shoes by Steve Beno.
Singing along to songs helps with phonological awareness, the ability to hear and play with the sounds in words. Five Green Apples has repeating phrases such as "Farmer Brown has 4 green apples hanging from a tree" to help your toddler learn the song and have fun.

Some activities you can do at home:
Make Applesauce, Apple Muffins and Apple Pie from the recipes in the back of Apple Farmer Annie and Apple Pie Tree mentioned above.

Create Apple Prints by cutting an apple in half and piercing each half with a fork to use as a handle. Dip apple half into red, yellow or green paint and press down on paper. Continue with various colors to create patterns and finish with a dash of glitter.

Create an Apple Purse by drawing a large apple with a stem onto foam. Cut out the apple and trace onto another piece of foam and using a hole punch, starting on one side of the apple, punch holes every inch, stopping at the opposite side leaving the top of the apple as is. Have your child use string or wool to lace the foam apples together. Add a green felt leaf and make a purse strap from a long piece of ribbon.

Fingerpaint Apple Tree, learn how your child can use his hands to create this project from DLTK-KIDS website.

Visit an Apple Orchard and pick your own apples as a family. Many orchards have corn mazes and other fall children's activities. Oaklee's Family Guide lists Apple Holler and Jonamac Orchard and offers coupons located in their print guide that you can find here at the library, while supplies last.

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