Insects: Toddler Storytime

Today’s storytime was all about insects, from butterflies to ladybugs, from beetles to bees!

Books We Shared

Butterfly, Butterfly by Petr Horacek is a lovely book about a girl exploring all the bugs in her backyard, and it finishes with a beautiful pop-up butterfly that was a big hit!

Some Bugs by Angela DiTerlizzi and illustrated by Brendan Wenzel shows how different bugs move, sound, hide and fly. We abridged it a lot and started in the middle of the book. Abridging books is often necessary for infant and toddler storytimes, because children this age can’t sit still that long. A book may have many qualities that make it good for infants and toddlers despite being longer. I always try to pick books that involve some movement prompts, so that kids can wiggle their fingers like a crawling caterpillar, or flap their arms like wings, and this one has plenty of those kinds of action words!

Flannel Boards We Shared

Letter of the Day: I

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

The Very Hungry Caterpillar

I was so excited to break out a brand-new flannelboard set we purchased for the library, with beautiful prints from Eric Carle’s The Very Hungry Caterpillar. I hope my telling was faithful to the book!

Ladybug Counting

(to the tune of “Peter Hammers”)

Ladybug has one spot,
one spot, one spot,
Ladybug has one spot
on her back.

(add spots and count higher numbers)

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.


On my toe there is a flea
Now he’s climbing on my knee
Past my tummy, past my nose
On my head where my hair grows
On my head there is a flea
Now he’s climbing down on me
Past my tummy, past my knee
On my toe… Take that, you flea!

Ladybug, ladybug

Ladybug ladybug fly out of the farm
And land right on my baby’s arm
Ladybug ladybug fly out of the tree
And land right on my baby’s knee
Ladybug ladybug fly out of your bed
And land right on my baby’s head
Ladybug ladybug fly out of the rose
And land right on my baby’s nose

Bumblebee was in the barn

Bumblebee was in the barn
Carrying his dinner under his arm
Bzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz! (tickle)

Here is a Beehive

Here is the beehive, (make a fist)
but where are the bees?
They’re hidden inside where nobody sees
Watch and see them come out of their hive
1, 2, 3, 4, 5… (open fingers one by one)
Bzzzzzzzzzzz! (tickle)

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!


Peekaboo, where are you
hiding in your… PLACE! PEEKABOO!
Peekaboo, I see you
and your smiling… FACE! PEEKABOO!

I’m a Little Beetle

(tune: I’m a Little Teapot)

I’m a little beetle, watch me go
I wiggle, wiggle fast (wiggle fast)
and very, very slow (wiggle slow)
I wiggle, wiggle all around, then I go (turn around)
back underground to the home I know (squat and touch the ground)

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

“Shoo Fly” from Children’s Favorites Vol. 1 by Disney

Video We Shared

We watched “The Very Quiet Cricket” based on the book by Eric Carle. It’s on our The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Other Stories DVD.

Continue the Fun

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

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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