Elephants: Toddler Storytime

This week we had an “elefun” time learning about elephants! We also did lots of counting practice in both English and Spanish, and played with bubbles using a new bubble song I found.


Books We Shared

This is Our Baby, Born Today by Varsha Bajaj and illustrated by Eliza Wheeler is a beautifully illustrated and poetic book about the birth of a baby Asian elephant, surrounded by its loving family. Want to know something cool too? One of our parents shared a fun fact with me, that elephants do indeed trumpet and celebrate the arrival of a baby, as the book describes. Here is a video taken by someone on safari, recording an elephant giving birth in the wild and the herd coming around and celebrating:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MSxw6D6Wl4U

Have You Seen Elephant? by David Barrow is a cute story about a boy playing hide and seek with his elephant, who claims to be “very good” at hiding. Since it’s slightly long for this kind of group I cut it short, so you’ll have to check it out and see what happens when they meet a turtle who wants to play tag!

Flannel Boards We Shared

Letter of the Day: E

We made a big capital “E” in the air, and brought out felt pictures of different objects that begin with E, and guessed what they were.

One Elephant in the Tub

One elephant in the tub,
Going for a swim,
Knock-knock (clap twice), splash-splash (slap knees twice),
Come on in!

Two elephants in the tub,
Going for a swim,
Knock-knock (clap twice), splash-splash (slap knees twice),
Come on in!

Three elephants in the tub,
Going for a swim,
Knock-knock (clap twice), splash-splash (slap knees twice),
Come on in!

Four elephants in the tub,
Going for a swim,
Knock-knock (clap twice), splash-splash (slap knees twice),
Come on in!

Five elephants in the tub,
Going for a swim,
Knock-knock (clap twice), splash-splash (slap knees twice),
And they all FELL IN!

(Source: King County Library System)

Nursery Rhyme We Shared

Five Elephants on a Spider’s Web

This is based on a Spanish nursery rhyme:

One elephant went out to play
Upon a spider’s web one day.
He had such enormous fun,
He called for another elephant to come… “Oh, ELEPHANT!”

Two elephants…

Three elephants…

Four elephants…

Five elephants went out to play
Upon a spider’s web one day.
The web went creak, the web went crack.
And all of the elephants went KERSPLAT!

(Source: The Measured Mom)

Action Songs & Bounces We Shared

We share a lot of songs, bounces & rhymes during storytime!
You’ll find lyrics/words to those songs & rhymes we shared without CD accompaniment here.

Willabee Wallabee

Willabee, wallabee, wee
An elephant sat on me!
Willabee, wallabee, woo
An elephant sat on you!

We sang this song and then substituted the kids’ names like this:

“Willabee, wallabee, wackery,
An elephant sat on Zachary!”

(Source: Sam Pesin, Open House Nursery School)

An Elephant Has

An elephant has a great big trunk (swing arm)
That goes swinging to and fro.
And he has tiny, tiny eyes, (make binoculars with hands)
That show him where to go.
His great big ears go flopping, (put hands by ears to be elephant ears)
Flopping all around
While his great big feet go stomping, (stamp feet)
STOMPING on the ground!

(adapted from https://www.kidsparkz.com/preschool-sings-zoo.html)

Miss Mary Mack

Miss Mary Mack Mack Mack
All dressed in black, black, black
With silver buttons, buttons, buttons
All down her back, back, back.

She asked her mother, mother, mother
For 50 cents, cents, cents
To see the elephants, elephants, elephants
Jump over the fence, fence, fence.

They jumped so high, high, high
They reached the sky, sky, sky
And they didn’t come down, down, down
‘Til the 4th of July, ly, ly!

Do Your Ears Hang Low?

Do your ears hang low?
Do they wobble to and fro?
Can you tie ’em in a knot?
Can you tie ’em in a bow?
Can you throw ’em over your shoulder
Like a continental (regimental) soldier
Do your ears hang low?

Open Shut Them

Open shut them, open shut them.
Give a little clap, clap, clap.
Open shut them, open shut them.
Place them on your lap, lap, lap.
Creep them, crawl them
Creep them, crawl them
Right up to your chin, chin, chin
Open up your little mouth… Buuuuuuuuuuut…
Do not let them in!

Goodbye Friends (song in sign)

Click here for video:  Goodbye Babies (Friends) 

Goodbye babies, goodbye babies
Goodbye babies, it’s time to say goodbye.

Music from CDs We Shared

Children love to sing and dance to music.  Here are some of the songs/bounces on CD that we used in storytime.

“Clap Everybody and Say Hello” from Sally Go Round the Sun by Kathy Reid-Naiman

“Bubbles” from Bon Voyage by Jazzy Ash

Video We Shared

We watched “Emily Elephant” from the Peppa Pig Bubbles DVD, in which a new girl at school, an elephant, shares with everyone what she can do.

Continue the Fun

Here are some more books about elephants to check out at your Pasadena Public Library Branch:

AnnMarie Hurtado

I'm a youth services librarian working in the Children's Room at the Pasadena Central Library. I purchase juvenile nonfiction books for all sites, juvenile Spanish books for all sites, and juvenile DVDs for the Central Library. I do a lot of programs with school-age kids, including Lucha Libros, writing workshops, STEAM Careers in Pasadena, and other STEAM/science programs. I teach 1-2 sessions of Infant/Toddler Storytime each year. 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, 36 Workshops to Get Kids Writing: From Aliens to Zebras.

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