This week, I introduced our theme, and we sang our opening song — “If You Want to Hear a Story.” Before we started reading our books, though, we did the “Heart” fingerplay from The Perpetual Preschool.
I put my hands together,
This is how I start,
I curve my fingers right around,
And I can make a heart!”
The Runaway Valentine by Tina Casey
This one is long. I didn’t find a good way to cut it don either because each thing builds off of the one before, but all my classes (except the 2 year olds because I didn’t include this book for them) had no trouble sitting through the entire story because it’s pretty cute, engaging, and funny.
After that, we did a “Matching Heart Flannel” from A Storytime Year: A Month-to-Month Kit for Preschool Programming by Susan M. Dailey. For smaller groups, you can pass out half of your hearts and say, “Oh, no! It’s a broken heart! Here is half. Who has the other part?” For larger groups, I just put each half on the board and had them match the pieces together.
Then, we read Love Monster by Rachel Bright
This is a cute and short book about a monster who doesn’t think he’ll ever find love. It was one of my favorite books this week.
After that, it was time to stand up for the “Little Heart” action rhyme from KCLS.
“I have a little heart, (place hand over heart)
And it goes thump, thump, thump. (pat chest three times)
It keeps right on beating
When I jump, jump, jump. (jump three times)
I get a special feeling when I look at all of you. (point to kids)
It makes me want to give a hug or two! (hug self)”
We also did the “I Can Hug” action rhyme from SurLaLune Storytime.
“I can hug, hug, hug.
I can hop, hop, hop.
I can kiss, kiss, kiss.
I can stop, stop, stop.
I can nod my head for yes.
I can shake my head for no,
And I can sit down very slow.”
Our third book was Love You More Than Anything by Anna Harber Freeman
This book was kind of take or leave it. I included it mainly for my two year olds who didn’t get the first book above. It had a few cute moments, but it’s not really a story book, so it’s not particularly engaging for older groups.
Then, we sang the “Pink Valentines” song from A Storytime Year: A Month-to-Month Kit for Preschool Programming by Susan M. Dailey. I made a variety of pink, white, and red hearts out of construction paper and cardstock to hand out to the kids. Then, I went over the colors with my younger kids first before singing the song.
(To the tune of “Three Blind Mice”)
Pink Valentines, pink Valentines.
Hold it high, up to the sky.
Now put it down upon your shoe.
Then on your head, and your knee too.
Listen to me and do what I do.
With pink Valentines, pink Valentines.”
(Repeat with red and white Valentines. you can change the body parts or sing it faster or slower to make it more interesting. You can also make up new things to do with the “do what I do” like throw the heart in the air, dance, hand it to someone else, sit on it, etc.)
Be Mine, Be Mine, Sweet Valentine by Sarah Weeks.
All my classes enjoyed guessing what each animal got their valentine as a gift, even if some were not very obvious and difficult to guess (like the otter). It was a fun little guessing game for them.
Then, we sang “Skidamarink” and our “Goodbye, Goodbye” song, and that was all.
This week for my walk-in story time, we made portable hugs to give as gifts to relatives we don’t get to see (and give real hugs to) often. All you have to do is have the kids trace each of their hands on cardstock, cut them out, and attach a ribbon to the bottom of each hand so they can be wrapped around a person.