It occurred to me the other day that this spring officially marks five years since I took over storytime.
While I’m feeling very reinvigorated since starting at my library almost a year ago, I know that keeping your storytimes fresh is an integral part of avoiding librarian burnout. Here’s some tips I brainstormed to freshen up your storytimes!
- Take a break. Try to take some time off or have a co-worker cover you for a few weeks. Breaks are a great way to re-energize yourself and your storytimes.
- Change your routine. If you’re been using the same six songs and you’re feeling bored, chances are your storytime patrons are feeling it too.
- Read all of the picture books on the new shelf. Think of the ideas that might spark from new books!
- Learn a new skill. If you’ve never tried live music or flannelboards, now is the time to give them a whirl. (My personal goal is to learn three ukulele songs this year!)
- Visit another library’s storytimes. See if you can arrange a swap between a neighboring librarian and yourself to offer constructive criticism.
- Attend a conference or training session. Being around other librarians can often spark new ideas and thoughts.
- Introduce a new manipulative. Maybe it’s time to make some shaker eggs or invest in a parachute.
- Randomize some of your choices. Make a song or rhyme cube. Throw all of the themes you’d like to do one day into a jar and pick them out a few weeks before.
- Fall down a storytime rabbit hole online. Check out some new blogs. Watch a great Youtube playlist. Scour a Pinterest board.
- Reach out to other librarians. Host a Guerrilla Storytime for local librarians. Organize a Prop/Flannelboard Petting Zoo.
What are your favorite ways to keep storytime fresh? Let me know in the comments.
– Katie Salo
Early Literacy Librarian
Indian Prairie Public Library