Preschool Storytime: Space!

We read books about space in today’s preschool storytime. First we did a song to learn everyone’s names:

Zoom Zoom Astronaut
Can you say your name or not?
What’s your name? _____________
Let’s all say it together!
(from Jbrary)

We started with Sheep Blast Off by Nancy Shaw and illustrated by Margot Apple. It’s a funny book about sheep who wander into a UFO and take it for a spin!

Then we learned a bit about our solar system:

planets by themselves

planets with names

We sang a song:

One little, two little, three little planets
Four little, five little, six little planets
Seven little, eight little beautiful planets
Orbiting our Sun!

Mercury, Venus and the Earth
Mars, Jupiter and Saturn
Uranus and here is Neptune
Orbiting our Sun!
(source: Miss Meg’s Storytime)

We read Light Up the Night by Jean Reidy and illustrated by Margaret Chodos-Irvine. This is a cumulative story, similar to “The House that Jack Built.” It’s about a young astronomer exploring his own “piece of the universe.”

Then, using one of the library’s iPads, we turned the storyroom into a preschool planetarium! We have an app called SkyView which allows you to see the locations and images of stars, planets, galaxies, satellites and other celestial objects surrounding the Earth by simply pointing the iPad in any direction.

Why I decided to do this was so that the kids could see something that’s probably very hard for them to see, and something they won’t get another chance to witness for at least ten years! Currently, and for only a very limited time, all five visible planets are in the same part of our sky, and can be seen with the naked eye just before dawn. But since very few of us are actually up that early, especially preschoolers who need their sleep, I found another way to show them just how close the planets are to each other right now.

The kids each got to take the iPad, one by one, as I guided them from Jupiter to Mars to Saturn to Venus and Mercury. They saw how the planets all line up in the southeast part of the sky.

We read a book about preparing for a rocket launch, called On the Launch Pad: A Counting Book About Rockets.

We sang some more songs about being an astronaut:

If you’re going to the moon, put on your boots
If you’re going to the moon, put on your boots
If you’re going to the moon, this is what you have to do
If you’re going to the moon, put on your boots

(add verses about the helmet, gloves and spacesuit)

(from Jbrary)

Zoom Zoom Zoom, we’re going to the moon
Zoom Zoom Zoom, we’re going to the moon
If you want to take a trip
Climb aboard my rocketship
Zoom Zoom Zoom, we’re going to the moon
Zoom Zoom Zoom, we’re going to the moon
(from Jbrary)

We finished with a funny movie about an alien who successfully passes for a trick-for-treater on Halloween. It’s based on the book Space Case by Edward and James Marshall.

Want some more great preschool books about space? Check these out!

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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