This storytime is dedicated to one of my favorite book characters of all the time, Pete the Cat. The series by Eric Litwin and James Dean incorporates music to keep kids engaged and aid with recall. This storytime consists of a book trailer, four books, three songs, a dance (Cool Cat Boogie), and a groovy button craft
Introduction & Storytime Buddy
Before beginning, I told the kids we'd have a very special guest today and that he is the star of our books. I then pulled out my Pete the Cat puppet and had them say hello. Some of them already knew Pete and were literally jumping out of their seats already! I placed Pete to the side so he could join us as our storytime buddy.
Suggestion: Show a book trailer!
If you visit Pete the Cat's website or look on YouTube, you can find several trailers for various Pete the Cat books. These trailers will hype the kids up for the story just like a movie trailer would and they also introduce the song so they'll be ready to sing-along!
Pete the Cat Books Round 1:
Rocking in My School Shoes
Instead of reading this one, I played the official audiobook with music (there is also a video on YouTube and the official website) a bluetooth speaker. I LOVE this song and the kids went wild! Every time it came on, they jumped out of their seats and started dancing and singing along. A few of them even hit the splits!
Pete the Cat & His Four Groovy Buttons
This one will serve as the theme for our craft and our Pete puppet just so happens to have on the buttoned shirt from the book. It also incorporates a song, which I rapped, and there is an interactive subtraction component too, as Pete loses his buttons one by one.
Craft Break: Bracelets with 4 Groovy Buttons
I showed the kids my bracelet and we counted the four groovy buttons. I said that we were all going to have four groovy buttons like Pete. This is a really simple craft and the kids loved that they could customize it. Have each child choose a colored pipe cleaner and count out 4 buttons of their choice. You can also discuss the color, shape, and size of the buttons.
The kids laced the buttons themselves, but some of them needed help wrapping the pipe cleaner to form a bracelet. I loved that they all ended up with very different designs.
Pete the Cat Books Round 2:
Pete the Kitty and the Groovy Playdate
The kids awwed when they realized Pete is just a kitten in this one! The kids were very invested in this one because it's a familiar situation: Pete the Kitty and Grumpy Toad have a playdate, but Grumpy Toad won't share his toys. This story isn't musical like the others, but it does a great job to open up a dialogue about sharing and friendship.
Pete the Cat and the Cool Cat Boogie
Pete loves to dance, but Grumpy Toad tells him he isn't any good. This makes Pete sad, so he gets his friends to teach him some new moves, but he keeps messing up. After speaking with a wise owl, Pete learns that it doesn't matter how he dances, as long as he is being himself. A step-by-step illustration of the "Cool Cat Boogie" is included in the back, so you can teach the kids the dance right after.
Dance Party: Cool Cat Boogie
We moved to an open space and went over the dance moves from the back of the Cool Cat Boogie book several times. I then played the "Cool Cat Boogie" song and we all danced along! Warning: It does get very fast, but it's tons of fun! I love the air guitar.