by Awnali Mills
The books I used for preschool storytime this week are Bear Feels Scared by Karma Wilson, Old Bear by Kevin Henkes, and Bear in the Air by Susan Meyers.
We did our opening song and then I had a bear puppet in my magic bag. One of my regulars guessed immediately what was in my bag—he’s getting so good at guessing that it’s almost no fun anymore! So, my bear friend introduced the theme and we were off.
I started with Bear in the Air, after one of my children informed me that bears Do Not Live In The Air And They Do Not Belong There. But, after reading this sweet tale, he agreed that it was a good book.
We rolled our song cube and sang, and then read Bear Feels Scared.
Next up was the flannel Ten Teddy Bears Sleeping in the Bed. I don’t know what my flannel originally was because it didn’t have any directions when I pulled it out of the cabinet, but there were ten teddies. I didn’t have a flannel of a bed, so I just used the whole flannel board to represent the bed. With each refrain, I had the children grab the imaginary blanket with me and “pull and pull and pull some more,” really putting some effort into it. Man, we pulled about a mile of blanket, and the kids loved it. I had one shy child who hadn’t engaged with anything at all up till that point, but towards the end he managed to do a few little pulls. Huzzah!
After that, I asked the children if they could growl like a bear. They did. So, I pulled out my DisneyNature Explore app. There is a section in it when it asks you to growl like a bear, and I had it all primed for that section. When you growl, a bear comes out on screen and growls back at you. When you growl again, it listens to you and growls back. Then, the voice comes on again and tells you the different noises that bears make besides growls. Ordinarily, this isn’t a storytime-oriented app, but this little bit seemed made for a bear storytime. The kids were enthusiastic growlers, and loved that the bear growled back at them.
We rolled the song cube and sang again, and then I finished up storytime with Old Bear. At the beginning, I had promised (well, the bear puppet promised) that, if they were good, at the end I would bring out something else that started with a B. So, out came the bubbles!