We hosted our first stuffed animal sleepover (a program where children have a storytime and leave their stuffed friend at the library overnight for photographed shenanigans).
Another program I inherited after a staff member left, I wasn’t entirely sure how this program would go. It was scheduled the week of Christmas, and we don’t have any other programming this week, so I was a little nervous about the timing.
We had a small group register – only about 6 kids, but they were all kids that knew me and the library well, something I found to be really important when they had to leave their stuffed animals in my care at the end of the storytime.
The storytime had been scheduled early in the morning – 10am, which isn’t something I’d repeat. It gave me lots of time to take pictures before the end of my shift, but it made it harder on the kids that had to leave their friends here for much longer than otherwise necessary.
We started with a registration form for the stuffed animal friends. It was simple enough, but let the kids share some great information about their animals. Here’s the form:
Child’s Name, Friend’s Name, Drawn Picture, Friend’s Favorite COlor, Friend Likes To, What Child likes best about their friend, What the friend needs before bed
Once they had completed that, we did the storytime. Here’s the breakdown:
Children bring their stuffed animal into the room. We put a name tag on it and snap a picture of the child with their stuffed animal. The child also fills out a quick “questionnaire” to gather some information about their animal.
Books: I offered a choice to the group, but they ended up wanting to read all of them!
- Don’t Let the Pigeon Stay Up Late by Mo Willems
- Waking Dragons by Jane Yolen
- Found by Salina Yoon
- Let’s Sing a Lullaby with the Brave Cowboy by Jan Thomas
Rockabye Bear by the Wiggles
We danced to this!
Five in the Bed
There were five in the bed (Hold up five fingers)
And the little one said, “Roll over, roll over!” (Make rolling motion)
So they are rolled over and one fell out. (Hold up one finger & surprised face)
// Count down until
There was one in the bed (Hold up one finger)
And the little one said, “I’ve got it all to myself!” (Spread out arms) (via StorytimeKatie)
Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear
Teddy bear, teddy bear, turn around
Teddy bear, teddy bear, touch the ground
Teddy bear, teddy bear, reach up high
Teddy bear, teddy bear, touch the sky
Teddy bear, teddy bear, touch your knees
Teddy bear, teddy bear, sit down please
Little stars (fingerplay):
Little stars way up in the sky (hold hands up and wiggle fingers)/ little stars us so very high (stretch hands up higher and wiggle fingers)/ they twinkle brightly through the night but during the day they are out of sight! (pull hands down quickly and hide them behind your back)
(via Storytime All Stars)
Craft: Decorating a picture frame for the photo of the child and their stuffed animal. (I put the picture I took of the child and their friend into these frames for pickup the next day).
Closing: Tucking in their stuffed animal into the giant blanket (I’m bringing a fuzzy large one from home. Singing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star as a lullaby, then sneaking quietly out of the room.
After the kids left, we teamed up to take a bunch of pictures – next time I’ll ask a volunteer to help with this, since it took a little more time than I anticipated. But the pictures turned out great!
Stuffed animals reading from Kindle Stuffed animals covering books Stuffed animals on the computer Stuffed animals looking at pet lizard Stuffed animals raiding the vending machine Stuffed animals playing the piano Stuffed animals hanging out