One of BayViews’ most popular resources is the listing of helpful websites for storytime planning. Below is the list organized by category to make it easier to find what interests you.
Looking for more storytime ideas, especially ideas for Toddler Time? Check out this website from the Perry Public Library in Ohio. They have several theme pages, with lots of book choices and song lyrics. Many include literacy tips to emphasize, too.
Run by a daycare provider named Jana, this is very similar to how most libraries compile their storytime themes. Under each theme, she lists picture books first (yeah!), then craft ideas. It appears that she regularly updates this site.
Hundreds of themes, listing picture books, crafts, and games. Like Step by Step above, this seems very well-suited to library preschool storytimes.
A great place to start to learn why we need storytimes, get advice for parents, booklists, information on child development, phonemic and print awareness, and other factors important for emergent readers.
Arranged by themes, these lesson plans include books! In fact, the book jackets are shown so you can see which picture books you might have and which may carry well to a group. Under each theme there are also songs, coloring pages, art ideas, recipes, games, and science ideas.
Look at the tabs on the left, and click on Book Themes, Rhymes, and other sections with lots of ideas you can use at storytimes.
Arts and Crafts
Hundreds of themes, with ideas for crafts, games, recipes, songs, and fingerplays, this is a great secondary source for ideas.
When you need a craft idea (NOW!), this is the site, with thousands of printable craft ideas. There are several themes around science, which is too often left out of the preschooler’s curriculum. This is a site to bookmark; I can always find something here when I run out of ideas.
A site run by teacher Peggy Drake, this offers books, songs, snacks, crafts, math games, and other activities for preschoolers arranged by theme.
Thousands of ideas to enliven your storytime, but no books listed. Go to the “Theme Station” for crafts and activities by theme, the “Story Station” for rhymes and stories to tell, the “Toddler Station” for active movement ideas, the “Pattern Station” for craft printables, and more!
Like Enchanted Learning, the DLTK site always has something on your theme, or is good if you are in a hurry. Most are simple paper crafts, and there are many multicultural crafts too.
Lots of easy craft ideas, with printable pages, for preschool storytimes.
Look for the menu on the left, where you can choose age groups, including 18 months to 2 years of age, and ages 3 to 5, which are perfect for preschool storytime craft ideas.
Songs and Fingerplays
A great resource for song lyrics to popular preschool songs; some of the lyric pages let you hear the music, too.
Both popular songs that kids like, as well as standard nursery and preschool songs, are listed here.
The fingerplays area has a great list of commonly used fingerplays; many come with an audio clip so you can learn the melody. There are photos of a person doing the fingerplay so you can copy the movement. There is also an area for action songs; many of these also include an audio clip.
Poems and songs listed by theme, this is intended for teachers but does list links for school librarians that can be helpful.