Toddler Storytime – Shapes

Shapes Storytime books

This was my very first storytime at this library, so I was a bit nervous to see what the group would be like. I will be doing four sessions each week, so I definitely had it down by the last session!

Welcome Song: “We clap and sing hello” (Tune: Farmer in the Dell)

We clap and sing hello, we clap and sing hello
With our friends at storytime, we clap and sing hello!
(We stomp and sing hello…
We wave and sing hello…)

Sign: “Circle,” “Square,” “Triangle”

Song:“I Can See Shapes” (Tune: London Bridges)

Before each verse, I held up the coordinating flannel shape and asked them what shape it was, then stuck it to the flannelboard as we sang.

Shapes flannels

I can see a circle shape, circle shape, circle shape
I can see a circle shape, how about you?
(square, triangle, rectangle, diamond)

After this song, we talked about the summertime activity of laying in the grass, looking up at the clouds and pointing out the different shapes they make. This led in nicely to the first book. 

Book 1: It Looked Like Spilt Milk by Charles G. Shaw

Flannel storyboard: I used some of the clouds from our Spilt Milk storytelling kit to have the children guess what shape they made

Ice cream cone cloud

Ice cream cone cloud

Song: “Circle Song” (Tune: The more we get together)

Have you ever seen a circle, a circle, a circle?
Have you ever seen a circle, which goes round and round?
It rolls this way and that way, And that way and this way
Have you ever seen a circle, which goes round and round?

Book 2: Lots of Dots by Craig Frazier

Rhyme: “Draw for Me”

Draw a circle, round as can be
Draw a circle, just for me!
Draw a square, shaped like a door
Draw a square, with corners four!
Draw a triangle, with corners three
Draw a triangle, just for me!

Action Rhyme: Star Chant

Before this rhyme, I handed each child a shiny gold star to hold. It was a little tough to collect some of them back, but for the most part the kids understood that it was just a game and they weren’t meant to keep the star.

Star shapes

Put your star shapes in the air,
Hold it high and keep it there
Put your star shape on your back,
Now lay it on your lap.
Put your star shape on your toes,
Now hold it by your nose
Hold your star shape in your hand
Now everyone please stand
Wave your star shape at the door
Now touch your star to the floor
Hold your star in your hand and jump, jump, jump
Now toss your star shape way, way, up!

Book 3: Shape by Shape by Suse MacDonald

Closing Song: “Icky Sticky Bubble Gum” – David Landau (not about shapes, of course, but it’s a favorite with our toddlers here so I plan to always include it as our closing song)

Craft: Build a house with shapes (construction paper pieces pre-cut to be pasted on paper in shape of house)

Shape House flannel

I introduced the craft by doing a quick rhyme/flannel:

“Build a House with Shapes”

Some houses are wood and some are stone,
But let’s build one with shapes alone.
Start with a square, but we won’t stop.
Add a triangle up on the top.
Then a rectangle for the door.
Now square windows 1, 2, 3, 4!
A little circle just for fun.
Now our shape house is all done!

My first group was a little on the rowdy side, and I noticed that some of the parents and caregivers weren’t as engaged as I would like, but the next three groups were great! I plan to go over my storytime guidelines each week, to reinforce the importance of modeling good storytime behaviors and sharing the experience with their child.

The shapes theme worked well for this age group, and I mentioned to the parents and caregivers that recognizing shapes is one of the first steps to learning the alphabet. I also offered a handout to be picked up at the end of storytime with the rhymes and songs we did, as well as an extension activity. I put a coloring sheet on the back, as an extra incentive to pick one up. 🙂


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