Our topic for today is fish! There is a lot you can do with this topic, especially since most of the kids are familiar with Finding Nemo & Finding Dory. For today, we focused on identifying different types of fish in the ocean and the wide variety of shapes, colors, and sizes of fish. This storytime contains three books, a fish guessing game, a flannel game, a song with motions, and finally a funny "fish sticks" craft.
Some Sea Tales To Read:
The Pout-Pout Fish (Deborah Diesen)
This book is adorable and rhythmic. It reads like a song, with the refrain "I'm a pout-pout fish with a pout-pout face, so I spread my dreary-wearies all over the place. Blub. Bluuub. Bluuuuub." The kids and I also found the picture on the top right to be hilarious!
Clumsy Crab (Ruth Galloway)
Nipper the crab hates his huge, clumsy claws. He plays various games with his sea creature friends, but his claws keep ruining the fun. But in the end, his claws save the day. I really love the illustrations and variety of critters in this one!
Hooray for Fish! (Lucy Cousins)
This is another really simple book but the kids really enjoyed the variety of fish Cousins depicted. They even caught that some of the fish looked like fruit! This is a good lead-in to the craft, as you can remind them that their fish can look anyway they like.
Activity 1: Guess the Fish
For this activity, I made a slideshow with different sea creatures on it. I turned the iPad away from the kids and gave them some hints about what fish is on the screen. For example:
"I am the biggest fish in the sea."
"I am a fish with sharp teeth."
"This creature hangs out at the beach and he snaps his claws like this."
And so on. I did whales, dolphins, crabs, clams, puffer fish, seahorses, starfish, octopus, and sea turtles.
Activity 2: Fish Felt Game & Song (Hiding Creatures) _________________________________________________________________________
For this activity, I wrote a little jingle to the tune of "I'm a Little Teapot," it goes:
"I'm a little fishy, I can help,
name the creature hiding behind the kelp."
Have the kids turn around while you sing the song and place one of the fish behind the kelp. Have them turn around and guess which one is hiding!
Activity 3: Baby Shark (Shark Family Song) _________________________________________________________________________
I remember this from way back when I was in preschool and I love it now as much as I did then! One of the preschool teachers remembered as well, so this song must have been popular in the 90's. We did not have the video from Super Simply Songs, but I still knew the words and all the motions.
I cut the video down so that it ended after grandpa shark. The part after that where the fish are trying to swim away makes me a bit anxious.
Hand motions for the song:
1. Baby Shark: Open one hand up and down, like you are making a shadow puppet.
2. Momma Shark: Put both hands together at the wrist, again making the jaws open and close the the rhythm.
3. Papa Shark: Now, the jaws connect at your elbows, so you will have both of your arms moving up and down.
4. Grandma Shark: She doesn't have any teeth, so go back to the momma shark motion and instead of having your hands flat, make fists to represent her gums.
5. Grandpa Shark: Same as Papa shark, but with fists like Grandma.
Craft: "Fish Sticks" (Hand Puppets)
This craft was super simple, since we happened to have a bunch of fish cutouts lying around (I am not aware of the source, sadly). We simply colored the fish (anyway you like) and used double-sided tape to stick them to large popsicle sticks. Googly eyes can be added to the eye area to make them a little more fun.