Toddler Time: The Five Senses

This was the first Toddler Time of summer, and ho boy, did I ever feel it. My Toddler Time that usually has a solid 15 kids had over 30! The crowd also included lots of newbies, which is good, but also tough, because they don’t know the rules of the road, so to speak.  This was a crazy crazy CRAZY Toddler Time. I also switched up my songs, so it made it feel even wackier. I tried to tie in my school age program themes for the week with the Toddler Time theme, which resulted in some..strange choices on my part this summer. Oops!

Opening Song: Welcome, Welcome Everyone

Welcome, welcome everyone.
Now you’re here; let’s have some fun!
First we clap our hands just so,
then we bend and touch our toes.
Welcome, welcome everyone.
Now we’re here; let’s have some fun!

Nursery Rhyme: The Old Grand Duke of York

Oh, the old grand duke of york,
He had 10,000 men.
He marched them up to the top of the hill,
then he marched them down again.
And when they were up, they were up.
And when they were down, they were down.
And when they were only halfway up,
they were neither up nor down.

Action Rhyme: Five Fat Sausages

Book: Polar Bear, Polar Bear, What Do You Hear? by Eric Carle and Bill Martin Jr.

Those bears! So applicable to every situation! With my younger toddlers, we just breezed through the book. With my preschool-y kiddos, they helped me make the noises. Great book that scales up and down seamlessly.

Song: Bread and Butter

This song goes with our music sticks. I actually didn’t get to use the music sticks with our first group, because there were so many kids and I didn’t have enough music sticks!! The second group dug it, though. Well, you live and you learn.

Bread and butter, toast and jam,
I hit my sticks as [loud, soft, fast, slow] as I can!

Book: Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

If you need a description of this book, you are in for a treat! It’s a delight. Also, delicious.

Finger Play for Toddlers: Open Them, Shut Them

Since I phased out the parachute play we were doing in the Winter, I added in some new stuff. Open Them, Shut Them is a classic, and it’s FUN!

Finger Play for Preschoolers: Put Your Hands Up High

Thank you once again, JBrary. This song is AMAZING. And super duper fun! I’ve used it so far with preschoolers, outreach groups of varied ages, and second graders. They were all giggling super hard by the end.

Action Song: Fruit Salad

This one’s from Kendra. It is also SUPER DUPER FUN GUYS. It’s simple enough for babies, but older kids think it’s hilarious too.

Watermelon, watermelon (make oval with hands)
Papaya, papaya (make a papaya shape with hands (kinda like a pear!)
Banananananana, bananananana (hug arms to body and rock them back and forth, like a baby)
Fruit salad! Fruit salad! (wiggle hips!)

Book: I Stink by Kate McCullen 

This book is challenging, even with a good group. The garbage truck does this little “talking to himself” thing that doesn’t necessarily translate well to reading aloud. With this crazy group of wigglers, it wasn’t my most successful choice. I flew through it, skipping a few pages here and there. I really like this book for a lap-sit, but it was not a winner for this group.

Early Literacy Tip of the Week:

It’s okay to use words that your toddler doesn’t understand yet – that’s how they build vocabulary! Try to use lots of different words, and explain what they mean. A big vocabulary is one of the key predictors of success in school!

Shaker Song: Shake It to the East

Shaker Song: Shaking your Shaker!

Song: Rum Pum Pum

Goodbye Song: Goodbye, Goodbye I’ll See You Soon

WOAH. I was sweaty and exhausted after this Toddler Time. It was fun but crazy. I should definitely have realized that summer was upon me and chosen more crowd-pleasing and shorter books. But there ya go. It was fun, although some of the kiddos got a little overwhelmed. Hopefully they’ll be back and have fun again!

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