Happy 4th birthday, Flannel Friday! To celebrate, we are featuring Julie Crabb as a guest blogger who is sharing the felt stories she created for a STEAM program called Story Explorers. Julie is a Children’s Library Associate at the Olathe Indian Creek Library in Olathe, KS, and is currently working on her Masters in Library Science at Emporia State University (go, Julie, go!).
Take it away, Julie!
Inspired by the likes of Amy Koester and Abby’s Preschool Labs, I set out to create my own program series celebrating all things S.T.E.A.M. (science, technology, engineering, art, and math) and Story Explorers was fully realized in January! Each month (once for toddlers/preschoolers and once for Kindergarten through 2nd grade), I choose a theme, present a brief Storytime, and then let the little ones explore a room filled with hands-on activity stations. One of these stations is Flannel Board Fun!
I set out my flannel boards, some directional prompts, and rhyme signage. Not only do children simply love getting to place and pull the felt pieces (yay tactile learning!), but the caregiver/child interaction has been fantastic! The above picture is a child who, with mom’s help, created his own story that involved the Hey Diddle Diddle characters floating in space. The bunnies were on their way to rescue them!
Okay, on to the pieces:
First up, I re-used a set I had from an Outer Space Storytime. I love the rhyming text presented in Astro Bunnies by Christine Loomis, but the illustrations just didn’t work for a crowd. Guided by the Flannel Friday Facebook group, I created the following set:
Astro Bunnies (with removable blue helmets)
See a star, think they’d like to go that far.
Climb aboard the rocket!
Once their rocket whooshes around a bit, they arrive in space.
They measure comets and meet bunnies from another place!
We also counted stars,
Hey Diddle Diddled it up,
And explored the phases of the moon (having preschoolers attempt the phrase ‘waxing gibbous’ is beyond precious!)
Thank you to Flannel Friday for creating the Guest Post-Palooza and to the wonderful Jbrary for hosting this newbie. I cannot put into proper words how much those of you who share online have inspired me this past year. I resolve to rock in 2015 and get my own blog up and running so I can contribute to the community too!