Cheesy blog title aside, I’m wondering about whether or not to use themes in storytimes.
When I first started doing storytime in my library, I needed to have a theme in mind in order to narrow down the myriad of books, rhymes, and fingerplays to choose from.
Then, during the ridiculous Chicago winter weather, I only had two families show up for a storytime and I didn’t want to use a theme and craft that I had prepped for twenty on just two families. Instead, I grabbed some of my favorite books and flannelboards from our in-house storytime collection and presented a “Miss Katie’s Favorites” storytime. It was one of the best and most fun storytimes ever!
Does this mean I’m ready to leap head-first into letting go of themes? No, not really. I’m still new enough to storytime that I haven’t burned out on themes. And there are still a ton of themes that I want to explore! (Especially some of your suggestions for Unusual Storytime Themes!)
But, the spontaneity of choosing books that I’m in the mood for, or simply books that I want to share immediately after finding them — without waiting for a perfect theme — is definitely alluring.
So, what about you? Have you ditched themed storytimes? Or can you not imagine leaving behind the themes? Let me know!
– Katie Salo
Youth Services Manager
Melrose Park Library