Category Archives: Storytime Crafts

Go Fly A Kite


Hello, March! On the chance that it comes in like a lion, I thought we should have a kite ready.

After years of searching for a kite fit for storytime, I came across this one from the blog Better in Bulk!

I made a double sided PDF to simplify things for you and the parents. Fold on the line, punch the hole, staple the staple. (Remember you don’t fold the corners being stapled). I cut a bunch of yarn which, theoretically, won’t be too heavy for the kite. I haven’t actually gotten to test it myself, but even just running around shows that it works pretty well.

Have the kids draw/color on the kite before it becomes a kite. I offered to do the stapling/hole punching myself and had an extra set on a table for the parents to use too.

I don’t have too many books to suggest, but check out my flying and kite tags on Shelfari. When I have more I’ll probably update the tags and hopefully remember to update the links.


Play With Your Peas (craft)

The idea of a pea themed storytime was no doubt derived from madness. I was surprised to find as many good books featuring peas as I did. But a craft? What the heck could I do? And then I quickly came to the logical conclusion of green pom poms+googly eyes+spoons=fun.

Add a plastic spoon and you are done. I had broken one of my craft rules (seems to be a trend lately) and hot glued on all the eyes myself, instead of having the kids use glue sticks (which works). The reason being is I didn’t want the poor peas to lose their eyes while being flung from the spoon. And where are they being catapulted to? Targets!

I’ve given you three options. One, seen above, with food and scoring numbers. A second with food and no numbers. And finally an empty plate where they can draw the food themselves, and has scoring numbers on its rim. Whichever you pick this will be the part of the craft they work on.

Empty plate PDF

Food with numbers PDF

Food without numbers PDF

Need books to go with the craft? Check out my food and peas tags on shelfari! And if you missed it, I recently made a Princess and the Pea related flannel story too.

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Fish Hats Craft (This Is Not My Hat)

I hadn’t planned to start posting new Flannel Friday stuff until later this month. But given that Jon Klassen won a Caldecott for This Is Not My Hat this week I figured I HAD to show you guys my new craft!

(Note: I don’t usually pay attention to picture book awards. I’m thrilled for Klassen but mostly I’m happy I bought my own copy of This Is Not My Hat before they slapped the giant gold award sticker on its beautifully minimalistic cover.)

For this craft I broke a few of my own rules. For one thing, lots of tiny parts to cut out. This is kind of a pain. If you guys think it would be easier if I added a thicker outline to the hats, let me know! I will do that. For you. Because I love you.

Otherwise it’s pretty basic. Color the fish. Color the hats. Glue the hats onto the fish. And with three hats to choose from the crab doesn’t have to be left out this time!

I made the seaweed myself. Can you tell?

click on photo for fish pdf

click on photo for hats pdf

click on photo for hats pdf

The pictures I pulled from old (presumably in the creative commons) books I dug through on Google Books. It was fun! And clearly inspired by Wondermark.

Would you like a side of books to go with your craft? Check out my fish or clothes tags on Shelfari! And if you guys have a book you love but isn’t on my list let me know and I’ll add it!

Storytime Craft: Balloon Bell

Hey look: a video! 

This craft is simple, but NOT for younger kids, unless you are sure their parents will be keeping an eye on them.

Do you want a craft that will make your coworkers hate you and the kids love you? Then I’d recommend Balloon Bells! That’s right, Balloon Bells! And here they are in three easy to follow steps:

1) Have kids (without swallowing them) put two tiny bells inside of a balloon.

2) Blow up the balloon. Use a hand pump to make things go faster. (insert a “that’s what she said” joke at your own discretion.)

3) Tie off the balloon, and let them have at it!

And now you’re having fun with Balloon Bells! And everyone else in the building will hate you until all your storytime kids leave. And then their parents will continue to hate you for at least another day or two.

Other options are to give the kids markers to draw on them. I didn’t! I’m lazy.

Also there is a slight possibility that, if a kid starts spinning the bells inside and given the right amount of force, friction and velocity, the balloon will explode and the bells will become festive projectiles of doom. I’ve never seen it happen with bells, but I have gotten marbles to spin fast enough and…and that gets pretty interesting. But under normal balloon popping circumstances tests have shown little danger of fatalities.

Need some good books? Here’s a musically themed selection I’ve liked using in the past.

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Storytime Craft: Foam Ball Spider

If I remember correctly, this is one of the first crafts I came up with when I started working at Libris#2. But that’s only if I remember correctly. My memory is a little hazy sometimes. Godzilla was the…4th U.S. president, right?

This all ages craft is pretty dang easy, and would be good for a storytime or part of any other program.  No need to punch holes before hand, the pipe cleaners can (should) be pushed in all on their own. Add markers and you’re done!

I got tired of coloring pages, paper plates and other normal kids crafts that have too many parts, are a pain to set up and get thrown away as soon as they get home. I wanted something fun that they could play with! This started the trend in making my own storytime crafts.

Here’s the original one I made. Shows that markers work much better if you get a foam ball with a smoother surface.

And feel free to check out my Shelfari’s spider tag, which has….exactly one book as of this writing. Hmm. Will need to do some research. Perhaps you have a good spider book you can recommend?

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