I was very excited by the partnership between the Association for Library Service for Children (ALSC) and LEGO/DUPLO. My library purchased classroom sets of three of the Read, Build, Play book and block sets for use in storytimes and other programs. I planned a special storytime series to debut the new sets. The three sets we used were Grow, Caterpillar, Grow, Let’s Go Vroom, and Busy Farm. The librarian toolkit (available here: http://www.readbuildplay.com/Read-Build-Play_Librarian-Toolkit.pdf) was a great resource for storytime ideas for each book, and it also provided good information to share with parents/caregivers. Here is an outline of how we ended up using the Grow, Caterpillar, Grow book and block set in our special storytime offerings for two and three year olds.
Butterflies and Caterpillars
- The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
- Butterfly, Butterfly by Petr Horacek
- Grow, Caterpillar, Grow by LEGO/DUPLO
- Five Little Caterpillars (from Storytime Magic)
- Very Hungry Caterpillar printables
We opened with the same intro each week of Roll, roll, roll your hands (adding verses as appropriate). The first book we used with the Caterpillars and Butterflies theme was The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle. I used a caterpillar made from green DUPLOs as a prop for this story. As the caterpillar ate through each item of food, I placed it around my DUPLO caterpillar.
Next we did a flannel board rhyme of Five Little Caterpillars. After that we passed out paper butterflies (made from stapling a paper butterfly cut from a piece of construction paper to a straw). We did the rhyme Color Butterflies and children raised their butterfly and made it fly when their color was read.
Next we read the book Butterfly, Butterfly by Petr Horacek. When we finished reading we turned on some music (Grow Caterpillar from the DUPLO Jams set available at www.readbuildplay.com). While the music was playing in the background the children helped me build a DUPLO caterpillar. We used a colored die and had a basket of the square DUPLO pieces. Each color on the die had a number on it. The children would add that number of colored blocks to our caterpillar on their turn.
After we built our caterpillar, I passed out copies of Grow, Caterpillar, Grow and together we read the story. After we read it as a group, I passed out the DUPLOS for each book and together the parent and child read the story again and built each bug as they read. This was a great place to insert the literacy tip included in the Librarian Toolkit about why it’s important to read a story twice.
Kara Fennell Walker works as the Head of Youth Services at the Geauga County Public Library in Middlefield, Ohio. She is writing for the Early Childhood Programs and Services committee. If you would like to learn more about her LEGO/DUPLO programs, you can email her at kara.walker <at> geaugalibrary.info.
Thanks. I’ll see if I can give this a try! It is a nice change to the usual story time followed by an activity.