Styling Librarian: Share a Story Shape a Future 5 Year Old = The Kindergarten Reader
“Share a Story, Shape a Future” button art by Elizabeth Dulmeba.
Today continues Share a Story, Shape a Future, a week-long annual event celebrating literacy for children. Be sure to click on over to the main site for lots of additional resources and stories!
5 Year Old = The Kindergarten Reader
Make a fool of yourself and your child will love you and books. Being a mom has made me a better actor, presenter, teacher… I’ve found my son has helped me grow immensely over time. I loved performing and reading aloud books with my son. Storytime has been a treasured time almost every night since he was a few months old, besides when he wanted to read throughout the day as well. I’ve learned to accept that my son doesn’t have a complete memory for all books we’ve read. Sometimes I’d share a book a few weeks after our first read and he’d be just as thrilled experiencing it the second time, third time, etc. Other times I read aloud a chapter a day of the books I wanted to make sure he experienced. One year later, it was a whole new book to him all over again! Of course he also a sponge to information in books and does remember some months later.
Happy moments in Kindergarten can be when you relinquish storytelling to the Kindergartener. Whether they want to retell or act out their favorite book or read aloud a favorite book to you, enjoy those moments. I loved when I could hear my son use different voices and expression when he shared one Elephant and Piggie book after another from Mo Willems. Those books are the ones I love reading aloud as well because it is such fun to be a silly reader distinguishing different voices for the characters. I also love having my son (or a whole class of Kindergarteners) act out the book. It is special to hear a few days after a library class time about how one of my students retold and then extended a story to her whole family after we celebrated it in class. I even heard once about a special playdate where a group of children went home and reenacted a book I’d shared over and over from different perspectives. Whether you share a serious, touching book, a non-fiction book, poetry book, humorous book, or historical fiction book, it is important to decide how to present the book. Just simply read? Read highlighted portions of the book first? Emphasize and give accents to some characters? Have children repeat special phrases? Sing it all the way through? Have children dance and clap along? Create a special slideshow/movie created for the book? Share the iPad version of the book and play the game with the children? I just love having a variety of choices for celebrating books.
The Kindergarten child is a treasure of a reader. They’re little sponges who will bring you a book four months after you shared it and tell you their favorite parts again. They also will often be the ones who will need support getting practice in selecting books. For example, here are my book selection tips for my Kindergarten friends starting out the year without past school library book selection experience:
- You will be overwhelmed. We have so many books in the library!
- Practice using your shelf marker and pick out a friendly picture book. -I usually isolate around ten favorite book baskets with characters such as Clifford, Elephant and Piggie, Pigeon, Magic School Bus, Biscuit, Elmer, Arthur, and Little Critter so that there’s a quick focus for children to grow accustomed to routines first. Then I introduce using the shelf marker (stick/card to mark the place where you’ve taken a book off of the shelf) over the next month exploring different picture book areas, non-fiction areas, and early reader areas. Such a fun beginning!
- Open the book you might borrow and look at a few pages. -I demonstrate over and over this practice.
- Decide if it is a good fit book or if you want to find a book in another area. -I do verbally talk over why I did choose or didn’t choose a book and then show how to return a book to the correct place and use my shelf marker to help me locate another book.