A place to share cool science ideas for storytime!

Acorns and Oak Trees

The Little Guys written and illustrated by Vera Brosgol

The Little Guys might be small, but they aim to be mighty. As they head off to find breakfast, they can conquer anything through teamwork—cross deep waters, dig through obstacles, and climb the tallest trees. Nothing can stop them! But as they begin to amass more than they need, the creatures in the forest ponder—what happens when no one can stop the Little Guys?

Because of an Acorn by Lola M. Schaefer

This enchanting and informative picture book explores the vital connections between the layers of an ecosystem, relating how every tree, flower, plant, and animal connect to one another in spiraling circles of life.

Hector the Collector by Emily Beeny

Hector begins collecting acorns of different sizes and shapes and is teased about it when his classmates find out, until their teacher explains about collections and asks who else has one. Includes author’s note about various kinds of collections.

Acorns everywhere! By Kevin Sherry

An energetic squirrel hoards acorns but forgets where he hid them after being distracted by a berry-gathering bear.

As an Oak Tree Grows by Brian G. Karas

This inventive picture book relays the events of two hundred years from the unique perspective of a magnificent oak tree, showing how much the world can transform from a single vantage point. From 1775 to the present day, this fascinating framing device lets readers watch as human and animal populations shift and the landscape transitions from country to city.

Dot & Jabber and the Great Acorn Mystery by Ellen Stoll Walsh

Two mice try to figure out how a little acorn turns into a huge oak tree.

A Friend for All Seasons by Julia Hubery

Robbie the Raccoon and his friends love Father Oak and worry that he is sick when his leaves begin to turn color and fall off, but Robbie’s mother explains what the change means and helps him plant some acorns as a sign of hope for spring.

Simple ideas for fall learning activities using real acorns:https://littlebinsforlittlehands.com/acorn-fine-motor-fall-sensory-activities-math-science/

How to dry acorns:https://www.wikihow.com/Dry-Acorns-for-Crafts

Shapes

Tangled: A Story about Shapes by Anne Miranda

An unruly gang of sixteen geometric shapes gets tangled in the neighborhood jungle gym until their friend comes to their rescue and order is restored.

Circle by Mac Barnett

When Triangle breaks the rule about not hiding behind the waterfall while playing hide-and-seek with Circle and Square, Circle must rescue him.

Square by Mac Barnett

When his friend Circle asks him to do her portrait after praising him as a sculptor and genius, Square struggles to carve her likeness from a stone block.

Triangle by Mac Barnett

After Triangle plays a trick on Square, Square plans to reciprocate but runs into trouble when he tries to enter the triangular doorway of Triangle’s home.

Sweet Shapes: A Forest of Tasty Shapes written and illustrated by Juana Medina

Introduces different shapes, depicting a forest full of animals created out of tasty confections and pastries.

Crescent Moons and Pointed Minarets: A Muslim Book of Shapes by Hena Khan

In simple rhyming text a young Muslim girl guides the reader through the traditions and shapes of Islam.

Round by Joyce Sidman

Newbery-Honor winning poet Joyce Sidman invites readers to search their worlds for round objects in nature. Illustrated with warm, intimate art by two-time New York Times Best Illustrated artist Taeeun Yoo, this fresh celebration shows why we love this shape best.

Friendshape by Amy Krouse Rosenthal

Friends shape who we are. They make us laugh. They fill us with fun. They stand by us during life’s up and downs. And even when we disagree with our friends, if they’re tried-and-true, they don’t stay bent out of shape for long. That’s the beauty of a good buddy. This joyous book rejoices in the simple beauties of friendship, and reminds readers of all ages that it’s good to have a group of pals.

Wild about Shapes by Jérémie Fischer

Acetate inserts printed with abstract shapes transform abstract screen prints into animals, while simultaneously introducing basic color theory.

Walter’s Wonderful Web written and illustrated by Tim Hopgood

A young spider named Walter tries to weave a very sturdy web. Can you pick out the different shapes that are formed while he is working?

All Year Round by Susan B. Katz

Illustrations and short verses introduce shapes associated with each month of the year, such as circles that make up a January snowman, and triangular treats enjoyed in November.

Apples and Robins by Lucie Félix

Using die-cut pages the story explores the shapes and colors of an apple tree through the passing of the seasons.

Go, shapes, go! By Denise Fleming

Circles, rectangles, ovals, arcs, and more have fun moving about, along with a mischievous mouse that wants to play, too.

Circle, square, Moose by Kelly L. Bingham

When Zebra and his enthusiastic friend Moose are asked to exit a book about shapes, Moose has other plans.

Pick a Circle, Gather Squares: A Fall Harvest of Shapes by Felicia Sanzari Chernesky

Fall is here, with all its wonderful visual delights–not just colors, but shapes! This clever concept book follows a family on a trip to a pumpkin patch and invites children to pick out shapes from the seasonal scenery–apple bushel circles, square hay bales, diamond kites in the autumn sky! Felicia Sanzari Chernesky’s sweet verses are perfectly complemented by Susan Swan’s gorgeous collage-inspired art.

Shape activities: https://www.prekinders.com/pre-k-shapes/

Snails and Slugs

Marigold & Daisy by Andrea Zuill

Although Marigold is excited to meet her new snail sister, Daisy, she becomes envious of the attention everyone gives her, but when Marigold reaches her breaking point and decides to run away, she discovers that Daisy may come in handy after all.

Escargot by Dashka Slater

Escargot is a beautiful French snail who only wants to be your favorite animal and get to the delicious salad at the end of the book, even if he has to try a carrot, which he hates.

Waiting for Goliath written and illustrated by Antje Damm

Bear has been sitting and waiting since dawn. “I’m waiting for Goliath,” he tells everyone. “Goliath is coming! He’s my best friend.” At last the bus pulls up. But no one gets out. Yet bear is sure: “He’ll definitely show up. You’ll see!

Norman, the Slug with the Silly Shell written and illustrated by Sue Hendra

Norman is a slug who wants to be a snail, but only if he finds the perfect shell. After trying out some possibilities, he stumbles upon a doughnut.

Snail has Lunch by Mary Peterson

When Snail’s bucket home is turned over, a ladybug takes him on a journey through the vegetable garden, discovering delicious new foods while encountering new animals.

The story of Fish & Snail by Deborah Freedman

Every day, Snail waits for Fish to return and tell him a story but their friendship is tested when Fish asks Snail to take a leap out of their book to actually see a new pirate book in the library.

Snippet the Early Riser by Bethanie Deeney Murguia

A little snail who likes to get up early in the morning has trouble waking up his sleepy family.

The Snail and the Whale by Julia Donaldson

Wanting to sail beyond its rock, a tiny snail hitches a ride on a big humpback whale and then is able to help the whale when it gets stuck in the sand.

Clementine by Sebastian Loth

Story of a snail who loved round things and had great determination as well as dreams.

Rainy Day Slug by Mary Palenick Colburn

One rainy day, a slug goes for a walk in the wide, wide world, going scrass, scrass, scrass through the tall, green grass, scuddle, scuddle, scuddle in a deep rain puddle, and scrape, scrape, scrape down a long, pink drape.

Slugs in Love by Susan Pearson

Marylou and Herbie, two garden slugs, write love poems in slime to one another but have trouble actually meeting.

Super Slug of Doom : a Super Happy Magic Forest story written and illustrated by Matty Long

When Blossom the Unicorn accidentally releases Zorgoth the slug from captivity, the reluctant heroes of the Super Happy Magic Forest must find a way stop him from drinking the potion of power which will give him the ability to destroy the forest.

Snail-Snaily-Snails by Bonnie Bader

Introduces the world of snails, sharing key characteristics while explaining how they are regarded as both a pest and a delicacy.

Nonfiction

Snails are Just My Speed! By Kevin McCloskey

Did you know snails build roads like engineers and go undercover in camouflage like spies? Did you know they can be smaller than a seed or bigger than a grown-ups hand?

Live Snail Activities:

http://www.sciencekids.co.nz/lessonplans/animals/snails.html

Make a snail habitat:

http://preschoolpowolpackets.blogspot.com/2014/04/make-snail-habitat-snail-anatomy.html

Big and Little

A Pig is Big by Douglas Florian

Rhyming text explains that cows are bigger than pigs, cars are bigger still, and the universe is the biggest of all.


Is it Larger? Is it Smaller? By Tana Hoban

Photographs of animals and objects in larger and smaller sizes suggest comparisons between the two.

Big or Little? By Kathy Stinson

Some days Toby feels big, like when he pours his own milk. But other days, he feels little, like when he spills it …

Something Big by Sylvie Neeman

A big one and a little one talk together. The little one is upset because he wants to do something big even though he is still small. They go for a walk along the beach. There something both surprising and big happens.

Big Bug by Henry Cole

Beginning with a bug, various objects are revealed as being big and small in comparison with other objects on a farm under the big, big sky.

You are (not) Small by Anna Kang

Two fuzzy creatures can’t agree on who is small and who is big, until a couple of surprise guests show up, settling it once and for all!

Little Big by Jonathan Bentley

A little boy imagines what it would be like to be big, with long legs like a giraffe, big hands like a gorilla, or a big mouth like a crocodile, but realizes that there are advantages to being perfectly little.

Big, Bigger, Biggest! by Nancy Coffelt

How would you describe a hippopotamus? Big might be the first word that comes to mind. What about a whale? Gigantic? Immense? How about enormous! What if you had to find a word for the biggest animal of them all–a dinosaur. Mammoth? Humongous? Colossal!

With its bright pictures of animals in all shapes and sizes, this terrific read-aloud introduces young children to the language of comparisons.

Big and Small, Room For All by Jo Ellen Bogart

In this clever concept book for young readers, award-winning author Jo Ellen Bogart explores the size of animate and inanimate objects and their place in the universe. She introduces children to the concept of “we” — that humans are a big part of the world, but a small part of existence.

Airplanes and Airports

The Airport Book by Lisa Brown

An exploratory journey through the airport.

Yoko Finds Her Way by Rosemary Wells

When Yoko gets lost in the airport, she uses her sign-reading skills to find her way back to her mama.

Flight 1-2-3 by Maria Van Lieshout

A boy counts his way through the airport and onto the plane as it flies towards its destination.

Richard Scarry’s A day at the airport by Richard Scarry

Rudolf Von Flugel takes Huckle, Sally, and Lowly on a tour of the airport.

Five Trucks by Brian Floca

Five different trucks do five different jobs to get an airplane ready for takeoff.

All Kinds of Planes by Carl Johanson

This partly true, partly fictitious book from the wonderfully wacky mind of Swedish illustrator Carl Johanson is a fantastic collection of planes and other zany forms of air transportation.

How to Eat an Airplane by Peter Pearson

Provides instructions for hosting a dinner party, following proper etiquette, at which one serves an airplane, beginning with the cockpit instruments and ending with the tail section. Includes facts about the various parts and how they function.

Little Plane Learns to Write by Stephen Savage

Little Plane learns to write by practicing his skywriting.

Airplanes Take Off and Land by Patrick T. McBriarty

Experience a day in the life of Pilot Stacey and her nephew Little Harry as they take a flight aboard Crow-Flies Airline flight #6. You will learn, along with Little Harry, all about the inner workings of the airplane, and the many individual steps every pilot goes through before taking off and landing.

Planes fly! By George Ella Lyon

Illustrations and easy-to-read rhyming text celebrate different kinds of planes, their instruments, what they carry, and what it is like to go for a flight.

Amazing Airplanes by Tony Mitton

Rhyming text introduces air travel, from the airport to the flight deck, with information about how planes fly, safety rules, in-flight entertainment, and air traffic control.

Straw and paper airplane: https://www.diynetwork.com/how-to/make-and-decorate/crafts/how-to-make-straw-and-paper-airplanes

Paper helicopter template and instructions: https://therapyfunzone.net/blog/paper-helicopter/

Into the Woods!

A Walk Through the Woods by Louise Greig

Step into a woodland wonder, where the secrets of the whispering forest unfold in an enchanting papercut world.

The Great Indoors by Julie Falatko

Woodland animals camp in a human house for a weeklong vacation while the family that lives there is away.

Vernon is on His Way : Small Stories by Philip Christian Stead

Today is a very nice day. There has never been a day so nice as this, except for maybe yesterday. Join Vernon and his friends Skunk and Porcupine on a series of three enchanting adventures entitled Waiting, Fishing, and Gardening, as they comb the forest floor for trinkets and go fishing in their own unconventional way.

Surprise! By Caroline Hadilaksono

Bear, Raccoon, and Squirrel are good friends, and when some city folks visit their woods they plan to throw a welcome party with snacks and entertainment–but when Bear returns with the party hats the humans are suddenly in a hurry to leave.

The Tea Party in the woods by Akiko Miyakoshi

As Kikko goes through the woods to bring a pie to her grandmother, she happens upon a home full of animals and joins their tea party.

Forest, What Would You Like? By Irene O’Garden

A forest details the things that would make it happy such as sun, flowers, trees, water, animals, and children rambling, climbing, and playing.

My Forest is Green by Darren Lebeuf

With art supplies in tow, a young artist explores the wonders of his urban forest during all four seasons. Using a variety of artistic mediums, the boy creatively depicts the smaller parts of the forest that make up the larger whole.

The gold leaf by Kirsten Hall

When the forest animals find a gold leaf, they fight about who gets to have it.

You’re Safe with Me by Chitra Soundar

The baby animals of the Indian forest can’t sleep. SWISH-SWISH! CRACK-TRACK! FLASH-SNAP! goes the storm. Only Mama Elephant’s words of wisdom can reassure them, “You’re safe with me.”

All Ears, All Eyes by Richard Jackson

As darkness falls in the forest, animals hoot, chirp, whirr, and bark, lulling drowsy children to sleep.

The Little Guys by Vera Brosgol

The Little Guys might be small, but they aim to be mighty. As they head off to find breakfast, they can conquer anything through teamwork—cross deep waters, dig through obstacles, and climb the tallest trees. Nothing can stop them! But as they begin to amass more than they need, the creatures in the forest ponder—what happens when no one can stop the Little Guys?

Bear’s Book by Claire Freedman

When Bear’s favorite book of stories falls apart, he is determined to write one of his own. He ventures into the forest for inspiration, but writing is harder than he thinks, and he soon discovers that he needs help from his friends. See how Bear transforms their day into a wonderful adventure in this story about creativity and friendship.

Nature self portrait: http:// https://happyhooligans.ca/nature-faces/

Nature paint brushes: https://www.messylittlemonster.com/2015/07/stick-craft-nature-paintbrushes.html

Twig boat craft: https://www.easypeasyandfun.com/twig-boat-craft/

Swimmers Swimming!

No Swimming for Nelly by Valeri Gorbachev

Nelly loves to wear her swimsuit but the thought of swimming scares her, that is until Grandma, who just so happens to be a swimming champion, helps Nelly realize she has nothing to fear.

Saturday is Swimming Day by Hyewon Yum

Swimming lessons are on Saturdays, and every Saturday one little girl has a stomachache. When she gets to the pool it’s loud, the floor is wet and slippery, and her swim cap is too tight. Her swimming instructor, Mary, says it’s OK to sit by the edge if she doesn’t want to get in the water this week. The next Saturday the girl has a stomachache again, but with Mary’s gentle encouragement, she eventually manages to make it into the pool to practice her kicks.

I’m a Duck by Eve Bunting

One day, an egg rolled out of a nest and right into a deep pond. Now that egg is a little duck, and the water is still very scary. Jumping into the pond at all seems impossible, never mind swimming in a line with all his brothers. “You’re a duck, and ducks don’t sink,” Big Frog points out.

Shark Nate-O by Tara Luebbe

Nate, who loves sharks, cannot swim, but with his brother’s prodding, a good coach, and a lot of determination he learns to swim like a shark. Includes facts about sharks.

Jabari Jumps by Gaia Cornwall

Jabari is definitely ready to jump off the diving board. He’s finished his swimming lessons and passed his swim test, and he’s a great jumper, so he’s not scared at all. “Looks easy,” says Jabari, watching the other kids take their turns. But when his dad squeezes his hand, Jabari squeezes back.

Can I tell You a Secret? By Anna Kang

Monty the frog has a secret he wants to share with you–he cannot swim!

Puppy Pool Party! : an underwater dogs adventure by Seth Casteel

Photographs and simple, rhyming text reveal what goes on beneath the surface at the puppy pool party.

Pool by Chi-hyŏn Yi

In this wordless book, two shy children meet at a noisy pool and dive beneath the crowd into a magical undersea land, where they explore a fantastical landscape and meet various creatures.

Don’t Splash the Sasquatch! By Kent Redeker

Señor Sasquatch wants to relax beside Mr. Blobule’s pool without getting wet, but he is thoroughly splashed by the other guests, who then pitch in to dry his “squizzlefied” fur.

Abigail the Whale by  Davide Cali

Abigail dreads swimming lessons. Every time she dives into the pool, she makes a big splash, and all the girls in her class shout: Abigail’s a whale! Abigail can see that she is larger than the other girls. She feels huge, heavy, and out of place. Abigail’s swimming teacher takes her aside and points out: we can change how we see ourselves.

Dino-swimming by Lisa Wheeler

Plant-eating dinosaurs compete against meat-eating dinosaurs at a swimming meet.

Heather Fell in the Water by Doug MacLeod

Heather was a little girl…who always fell in the water. She didn’t mean to do it. She didn’t enjoy it. But she fell in the water nearly every day, and so her parents made her wear water wings all the time. Find out how Heather overcomes her fear in this warm and funny story from a much-loved team.

Maisy Learns to Swim by Lucy Cousins

Splish-splash! Maisy’s going to a swimming lesson!

What absorbs water and what does not: simple water science for kids https://littlebinsforlittlehands.com/preschool-water-science-experiment/

Sink or float experiment: https://laughingkidslearn.com/sink-or-float-experiment-with-nature

Outdoor foil river: https://frugalfun4boys.com/tin-foil-river-outdoor-water-play/

Mini ice boat racing: http://www.toddlerapproved.com/2015/06/ice-boat-racing-for-toddlers.html

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