Family Storytime: Crocodiles and Alligators

Today we read books, sang songs and did fingerplays about crocodiles and alligators! We started with a song called “Alligator, alligator”:

alligator puppet

Alligator, alligator, long and green (hold out arm: 4 fingers, thumb below)
Alligator, alligator, teeth so mean (open and close fingers and thumb)
Snapping at a fly, snapping at a bee, (snap with fingers and thumb)
Snapping at a frog, and snapping at me!
He caught the fly, he caught the bee, (snap with fingers and thumb)
He caught the frog, but he didn’t catch me!

(adapted from a rhyme at the King County Library System Website:,_Alligator)

Then we read a book about a crocodile who wants to play, but keeps being told he is a nuisance… It’s called Solomon Crocodile by Catherine Rayner:

Solomon Crocodile

Next we did some felt shape art, and I distributed shapes to all the children. There were circles, ovals, triangles, rectangles, crescents, and an “S” shape. After they brought their shapes to the felt board, we made this picture of a flamingo:

flamingo shapes

We also did a little rhyme about the flamingo:

One flamingo
One pink flamingo the finest in the zoo,
People come from miles around to see what he can do.
He flaps his wings
He turns around
He stands with 1 leg off the ground

Why flamingos all of a sudden? Well our next book was the classic For Pete’s Sake by Ellen Stoll Walsh, in which a baby crocodile named Pete wonders why he is so different from his friends:

For Pete's Sake

We sang about Five Little Monkeys Teasing Mr. Crocodile:

five little monkeys and crocodile

Then we sang a song called “Going on a Gator Hunt,” based on Going on a Bear Hunt:

We’re going on a gator hunt!
We’re gonna find a big one.
I’m not afraid.
Are you?
Not me!

Verse 1
Look, there’s a beach!
A big sandy beach!
Can’t go under it.
Can’t go around it.
Gotta go over it!
*Hot, hot*
(repeat refrain)

Verse 2
Look, there’s a forest!
A swampy cypress forest!
Can’t go over it.
Can’t go under it.
Gotta go through it!
*paddle, paddle*
(repeat refrain)

Verse 3
Look, there’s grass!
Pointy spikey grass!
Can’t go over it.
Can’t go under it.
Gotta go through it!
*ouch, ouch*
(repeat refrain)

Verse 4
Look, there’s a swamp!
A thick, oozy, muddy swamp!
Can’t go over it.
Can’t go under it.
Gotta go through it!
Ew! *Slosh, Slosh*
(repeat refrain)

Verse 5
Look, there’s a hole!
Maybe there’s a gator in there.
I’ll go see.
Follow me.
AHHHH! It’s a gator!
Quick, back through the swamp! (slosh, slosh)
Run through the grass! (ouch, ouch)
Paddle through the forest! (paddle, paddle)
Tip toe on the beach! (hot, hot)
Phew! We made it!

We’re not going on a gator hunt again!

(adapted from the song found at the King County Library System website:

We read the book There’s an Alligator Under My Bed, another classic, this one by Mercer Mayer:

There's An Alligator Under My Bed

We showed the film “Monty,” an animated version of the book by James Stevenson:


It was a cute film that got a lot of laughs. If you’d like to check it out, it’s on the Crazy Hair Day DVD available from the library.

We finished storytime with “Shake My Sillies Out” by Raffi and “Goodbye, Friends.” If you’d like to check out more fun books about crocodiles and alligators, try these!

I Crocodile

The Crocodile Who Didn't Like Water

Watermelon Seed

AnnMarie Kolakowski

I'm a youth services librarian currently working at the Lamanda Park Branch Library while Central Library is closed for seismic repairs. I purchase juvenile fiction for grades 2-8, and some foreign languages. I do a lot of programs with school-age kids, including 3 regular book clubs (Windows and Mirrors, Read Around the World, and Lucha Libros), as well as writing workshops and STEAM/science programs. I also Infant/Toddler Storytimes and Preschool Storytimes, and outreach to local area preschools. I love what I do, working with kids of all ages to inspire them to learn and use their curiosity and imaginations. Outside of my work at the library, I am also the author of a book on creative writing activities for kids.

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