Preschool: Friends (Valentine’s Day)

This week’s storytimes are all about friends and Valentine’s Day! I thought I’d post after today’s storytime so you could see what I’m up to the rest of this week. Please chime in if you have any suggestions for the program I’ll be working off of for the rest of the week.

Today marks the second week of our new storytime day and I wasn’t sure how many to expect. (We now offer preschool storytime two days a week through May when we will resume the one preschool program per week schedule during the summer.) I began the program with a mom and daughter, but just before I started reading the first story a preschool group arrived along with another family. We ended up with 17.  It was a great mix of enthusiastic kids and caregivers!

This was the first time the mother and daughter had been to storytime, so as we got to know each other we played with the rhyme cube- a great early literacy tool which introduces the idea of symbols, allows us to practice great songs, increases participation each time kids get to roll the cube and pick the song we sing, and builds learning confidence as kids become familiar with the songs and recognizing the pictures and text. It is also a useful conversation starter for preschoolers and caregivers.

Heart FeltBefore we read our first book about friends, we sang! I placed red and pink hearts in a pattern on the felt board the first time I sang the song. The second time, I pointed to the heart as we sang and counted while kids and caregivers counted on their fingers. We used the sign for heart and kiss (thanks for the timely Valentine’s Day videos, Jbrary!) in the song. One little girl immediately chimed in that the sign for kiss is also the sign for “more” in a lot of households! Way to go kids and parents!

Song: Hearts and Kisses (with ASL sign for heart and kiss)
1 little, 2 little, 3 little hearts
4 little, 5 little, 6 little hearts
7 little, 8 little, 9 little hearts
10 little hearts and a kiss, muuah! (We also blew kisses at the end so we could catch each others’ and save them for Friday.)
Credit: Jbrary

Book: Pepo and Lolo are Friends by Ana Martín Larrañaga (Candlewick Press, 2004)Pepo and Lolo
Pepo and Lolo is a simple book that works well as an introduction to the Friends theme. Tt became a conversation piece today. We talked about other friend books featuring pigs and discussed how to figure out which animal was Pepo and which was Lolo using clues in the illustrations and text.

Song: The More We Get Together
Oh, the more we get together,
Together, together,
Oh, the more we get together,
The happier we’ll be.
For your friends are my friends,
And my friends are your friends.
Oh, the more we get together,
The happier we’ll be!
Credit: Sur La Lune Storytime

YouWillBeMyFriendBook: You Will be my Friend! by Peter Brown (Little, Brown, 2011)
I’m a Peter Brown fan and this book does not disappoint. It is a funny, well illustrated story about Lucy, the enthusiastic bear and her search for a new friend. Her enthusiasm does not go over well with the wide variety of animals she tries to convince to be her friend (some not typically found in bear country). Eventually she gives up in frustration and decides to be herself, even if that is a lonely self. The story ends well though with a flamingo saving the day. I have several favorite pages, but one is certainly the one with a flock of flamingos all wearing sunglasses except the one who later befriends Lucy.

Song: If You’re Ready for a Story

If you’re ready for a story, blow me a kiss!
If you’re ready for a story, blow me a kiss!
If you’re ready for a story, If you’re ready for a story,
If you’re ready for a story, blow me a kiss!
… sit down please

Book: Hug Time by Patrick McDonnell (Little, Brown, 2007)Polar-Bear-Hug
Valentine’s Day is about sharing our love and so is Hug Time. The book takes us on a global journey as kitten works on his “Hug-To-Do-List.” His adventure finishes up at the Arctic Circle, an appropriate end point for an Alaskan storytime, where he meets a friendly polar bear as pictured here.

Song: Skidamarink
Skidamarink a dinka dink. (Put right elbow in  left hand and wiggle  fingers)
Skidamarink a doo. (Put left elbow in right hand and wiggle fingers)
I love you. (Point to eyes, hug yourself, and point to others)
Skidamarink a dinka dink. (Repeat actions)
Skidamarink a doo.
I love you. (with ASL sign)

I love you in the morning. (Make a big circle over head  like the sun)
And in the afternoon. (Hold arms in circle out in front of you)
I love you in the evening. (Move arms in circle down)
And underneath the moon. (Release arms and make another big circle over head)

Skidamarink a dinka dink.
Skidamarink a doo.
I love you. (with ASL sign)


It’s not often that I’ll post a selfie here- in fact this may be the last time- but I followed Rebecca’s lead (Sturdy for Common Things) and thought you needed to see the craft fun we had. A photo of just the hat and glasses sans a face and head, doesn’t do them justice.

Heart glasses
20140211-130117.jpgThese glasses are super simple to make, I had all of the supplies on hand, and the kids were so proud to wear them! My coworkers thought it was Elton John day at the library and I didn’t tell them. Hmmm… I just might have to make them all a pair of heart glasses for Valentine’s Day! I found these glasses at Sturdy for Common Things. If you step by step directions, visit Rebecca’s site.


  • 2 full length pipe cleaners (shaped into hearts)
  • 1 pipe cleaner cut in half (to form the arms- one end of each twisted around the side of a heart)
  • 1 piece of pipe cleaner approx. 1″ long (twisted around the hearts to connect them together)

Valentine Hat
Most kids made both crafts so they left the library ready for a party. One boy decided his and mine were alien Valentine hats. After making what we thought were alien sounds we moved on to Valentine robots. I imagine there will be some kings and queens with Valentine crowns before the day is done also.
I placed a variety of materials out, along with the essential hat pieces, and let the kids and caregivers make hats however they wanted. This mostly open-ended activity is a hit at my library and the k20140211-130107.jpgids make some cool creations.

To create the hat, bend the strip of posterboard creating a band and staple the two ends together. Staple the two pipe cleaners on either side of the band, pointing up. Bend the top of the pipe cleaner over slightly to give more area for attaching a sticker. Decorate the band!


  • Strip of white posterboard 2″ wide (for kids the paper can be approx. 22″ long)
  • 1 pipe cleaner cut in half for antennae
  • lots of Valentine stickers, hearts, feathers, etc.
  • crayons and markers
  • craft glue for feathers and anything that isn’t a sticker
  • stapler to staple antennae (Kaboodle directions call for hot glue, but the stapler works fine. I used heart stickers to cover the staple.)

Credit: Kaboodle via Sunflower Storytime

Image Credits:
Pepo and Lolo are Friends Amazon
You Will be my Friend Junior Library Guild
Hug Time 32 Pages


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