3 Fun Activities for Community Story Times

Between the heat and vacation, we know the challenges of coming up with new ideas to add interactivity into routine story times. This blog, we’re focusing a bit on resources for community storytellers.

Greetings Story Tellers!

At Novel Effect we’ve been having fun at our local libraries and bookstores reading stories with our app and doing activities with little readers from Seattle to Charleston. Between the heat and vacation, we know the challenges of coming up with new ideas to add interactivity into routine story times.

Teacher At Montessori School Reading To Children At Story Time

This blog, we’re focusing a bit on resources for community storytellers. These special story times can take place in community centers, at libraries and parks, in the children’s section of your favorite local bookstore, or wherever you find a group of children who are willing to listen and ready to have fun.

With Novel Effect, all you need is a device and a blue-tooth speaker (if you have a bigger group) and you instantly have an immersive story time that will keep kids focused and attentive. But, what are some other ways to get the children involved and interacting with the story? Here are 3 suggestions we’ve come up with at our events (all the books, of course, have soundscapes in the Novel Effect app). Try them at your next story time and see your story time crowds grow and grow.

 

1. Everybody dance now!

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Sandra Boynton’s Barnyard Dance is an adorable excuse to dance some sillies out and learn animal sounds. Let everyone pick a plastic animal (or picture) from a bucket. Gather the group in a circle and read the story once with Novel Effect. On the 2nd reading everyone stands up and dances to their parts in time with the music. It’s sure to be a baa, moo and a cock-a-doodle-doo, hoedown!

 

2. Bon appetit!

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Mouse and Minka share quite a few summer treats in Mouse’s First Summer by Laurent Thompson. Why not increase the flavor (sorry, wince) with some treats from the story? Serve sweet lemonade, watermelon and have children make their own PB&Js just like those adorable mice siblings.

 

3. Near, far, wherever you are!

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In “Duck and Goose Go to the Beach,” Duck and Goose are not quite on the same page about a summer excursion. After reading this story use this element as a springboard to discuss distant versus near places children might visit (or already have this summer). Then you can have the children draw two pictures: one of a nearby place to visit and one of a faraway place to visit.

 

What have you done at your story time events to keep families returning? Share your ideas be tweeting us @Novel_Effect!

And, as always Happy Reading!

How to Do Story Time Like a Pro: Parents

For the next three months, we’re bringing you a series of tips on how to be a master storyteller in any situation. This month, we’re focusing on story time at home. Here are seven ways you can jazz up story time at home to get your little readers coming back for more…

At Novel Effect, we LIVE for story time. We’ve spent years mastering story times, so we thought it was high time we shared some of that info with you! For the next three months, we’re bringing you a series of tips on how to be a master storyteller in any situation. This month, we’re focusing on story time at home. Next month, it’s educators in a classroom. We’ll end the series with story time events like at libraries and bookstores.

As the school year winds down (whoa, that was fast) we want to keep our little learners engaged in literacy experiences even when they’re not in the classroom. Here are seven ways you can jazz up story time at home to get your little readers coming back for more…

 

  1. Set up an awesome story corner

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It doesn’t have to be fancy, just fun. Get a bunch of pillows to lean up against and a snuggly blanket.

 

  1. Review the story before you read

Get to know the story so you can ask questions and expand on your child’s enjoyment and understanding.

 

  1. Get a special book box

Decorate or wrap a box with a lid, place a few favorites and maybe a new title in it and let your child “unwrap” the day’s selections. Novel Effect has over 130 titles, check out the stories you can read with our app and include one of those for a magical story experience.

 

  1. Read the title and the author names

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The simple but oft overlooked step of reading the title of the story and the author name provides children with book understanding basics they’ll use later in life.

 

  1. Relate the story to personal experiences

Discuss family happenings and events to develop a connection to the text and your child.

 

  1. Use Novel Effect to enhance the experience

Summer days are exhausting (who am I kidding, every day is exhausting when you’re a parent!) Reading stories out loud with our app will enhance the experience and add some much needed energy to tired moms and dads.

 

  1. Have fun!

Mother And Baby Daughter Reading Book In Playroom Together

Story time shouldn’t be a chore, it should be quality time, well-spent. You’re doing everything right already, because you’re reading your child a book! Way to go!