Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Guerrilla Storytime - OLC 2016 Convention and Expo

On Thursday, September 29, 2016, twenty-one librarians gathered together at the OLC Convention and Expo in Sandusky, Ohio to participate in a Guerrilla Story Time.

What is Guerrilla Story Time, you ask?  Call it a program, advocacy, or a movement of awesomeness! Guerrilla Story Time was conceived by the Joint Chiefs at Story Time Underground and is spreading across North America.  Please check out their website for more.  We thank them for permission and guidance as we brought G.S. to the OLC for our second time.  Library Village, along with a bunch of our new best friends, spent a fun filled hour discussing all things story time.  The hour flew by as the conversation didn't stop for a minute.   Hopefully everyone who participated left with a few new ideas!  We know we did.


Challenge: All the moms are talking in the back – what do you do?
1. Stop and refocus – “Ok, I need everyone’s attention, now!” (Talking to the kids but really talking to the moms!)

2. "I know it’s a great time to socialize, but we’ll have time for that later.  Right now I need you to be a good role model for the kids." (Parents may not know they are being disruptive)


3. Encourage a lot of participation – if you’re singing, you won’t have time to talk!


4. "Parents, if your kids are distracted, take them out until they calm down, and KIDS, if your parents are distracted, feel free to take them out until they calm down!"


5. Lower your voice so they can’t hear you until they stop talking.


6. Just stop reading! "I’m sorry, I just can’t go any further until we’re all together."


7. Remove the back row of chairs so parents can’t hide back there.


8. Teachers can be offenders too! "Boys and girls, I need your teachers to be listening as well."


9. Remind parents that their own children may not be able to see them (if sitting in lap), but every other child in the room can see them.  They have to be good role models for all the children.


10. If you are uncomfortable confronting parents, try to make them participate as much as possible.  Tell them you need their help (to make a circle, to sing a song, etc.).


11. "YOU are your child’s first and best teacher!"


12. Allow time afterwards for caregivers to chat while the children play. Make sure they know about this at the beginning.



Question: Do you include a digital aspect in your storytime? How is that received by both the staff and the patrons?

1.  AppleTV
     a. Letter of the day/ number of the day app – Morphabets

2.  Display words to songs with a PowerPoint or Smartboard – gets parents’ faces up, rather than staring down at their paper.

3.  Freegal for free songs – parents can get to from home

4.  Gonoodle.com for fun videos

5.  SmartTV – nonfiction YouTube videos (i.e. a shark video for your shark-themed story time)

6.  Bird-watching app – very interactive

7.  Include an “App of the Week” on your handout, which caregivers can take home

Try not using screen time every week, so the kids aren’t expecting it when they come.

Ask your patrons! Do they want you incorporating tech in story time, or do they feel their children get enough of that elsewhere? Would parents like a lesson in your online services, such as OverDrive, or an actual techy story time for the kids?
Challenge: No one is dancing with you – what do you do?

1.       Just go with it! Your energy may convince others to join you!

2.       Remind parents at the beginning that they are expected to participate

3.       As relationships build between caregivers and children (sometimes meaning grandparents), the adults usually become more comfortable participating and dancing

4.       Ask everyone to stand up so we can dance – "that means you, too, grownups!"

5.       Call upon the kids you know to help you, and newer kids will want to help, too!

6.       Model dancing with a child, and then hand them back to their grownup, expecting the grownup to keep the fun going.

7.       Make sure everyone understands that this isn’t a show – it is meant to be interactive for the whole family!

Challenge: Sing your closing song

1.       Our hands say, “thank you” with a clap, clap, clap.
Our toes say, “thank you” with a tap, tap, tap.
Clap, clap, clap. Tap, tap, tap.
We roll our hands around and wave, “Goodbye!”


2.       We all go up, up, up, and down, down, down.
We all go up, up, up, and turn around and around.
We all touch the sky, and clap, clap, clap,

Take a bow, and wave goodbye.

3.       Wave up high, and wave down low,
I think it’s time, I’ve gotta go.

Wave your elbow, wave your toes,
Wave your tongue, wave your nose.
Wave your knees, wave your lips,
Blow a kiss with your fingertips.
Wave your ears, and wave your hair,
Wave your belly, and your derriere.
Wave your chin, and wave your eyes,
Wave your hands to say goodbye. (from picture book Wave Goodbye by Rob Reid)



Challenge: Sing your story time opener

Try playing an instrument! Some of us play guitar and ukulele – most children’s songs are very simple and only require a few easy chords! If you want to use a “cheat,” one member recommends the Guitar Buddy
1. (Clapping hands on lap and together)
Bread and butter, marmalade and jam,
Let’s say hello as loudly as we can – HELLO!

(Repeat, saying hello quietly, slowly, and quickly) End on soft so that voices are quiet and ready to begin!

2. "Hello Friends" song from Jbrary

3. (To tune of the Farmer and the Dell)
We clap and sing hello, we clap and sing hello,
With all our friends at story time, we clap and sing hello!
(Repeat with waving, and stomping)


4. "Open, Shut Them"
Open, shut them, Open, shut them,
Give a little clap, clap, clap.
Open, shut them, Open, shut them,
Put them in your lap, lap, lap.
Creep them, creep them, Creep them, creep them,
Right up to your chinny, chin, chin.
Open up your little mouth but
Do not let them in!


(For babies, you can open and shut their arms and tickle them on the "creep them" part. For older children, remind parents that it's really important for them to use their fingers to help develop writing skills.)
 
Question: A parent says (loudly!) that they miss the other storytime person! What do you do?

1. This is a great opportunity to remind parents that your child is going to have a lot of teachers, and every teacher will have different qualities. There’s no wrong or right way to do storytime! Three people can do the same storytime and each do it differently. It’s good for kids to see people do things in different ways.

2. It’s hard to follow someone else’s storytime plan or do their opening/closing songs – it’s ok to put your own special twist on it.

3. It can be hard for families to move up from one age group to the next. Just encourage the parents that their children ARE READY to move on and they’ll do great!
4. Some parents may also move back to a younger group for the environment/librarian they are more comfortable with. But eventually, the children will get bored and be ready to move up!

5. Ultimately, being told they miss the other person is a HUGE compliment to that librarian. It’s ok to acknowledge that yes, that librarian is fantastic, but unfortunately he/she isn’t here today (or has retired, or whatever the situation may be).

6. If you’re told that a family goes somewhere else now for storytime, you can say “I’m so happy that you found somewhere you love.” Take the high road, even if it hurts your feelings.

7. When multiple libraries are available, it is fine for families to try storytimes at various locations. We want them to find a place they like! You can even partner with other libraries to promote one another’s storytimes. 8. This happens to librarians all the way up the chain – not just storytime librarians! Patrons may be disappointed when a head librarian or other administrator is replaced, but eventually they forget the former person and YOU will become their favorite librarian J Make them love you and they will!


WILD CARD: Audience poses a question – What is your favorite rhyme or fingerplay?

1.    (
Put hands together…)
Five little peas in a peapod press. 
One grew, two grew, and so did all the rest.
And they grew and they grew and they did not stop
Until one day that pod went POP!


By this point, everyone was getting anxious to head out for the evening, so we cut things off here.  This was a wonderful discussion with some truly fabulous and dedicated librarians.  We hope to see them again at future conferences and on Facebook! Remember to follow the Ohio Storytime Underground page to connect with other Ohio librarians! Thanks!
 
 

Friday, July 29, 2016

Flannel Friday - Mr. Lou's Mustache

I wanted to read the fabulous Book O'Beards by Donald Lemke in a family story time, and needed a fun rhyme to go with it.


Thank you, Literary Hoots, for this hilarious and fun felt rhyme! The kiddos loved it so much that we had to do it twice!

Mr. Lou's Mustache


There once was a man named Mr. Lou,
He had a mustache that grew and GREW!
 

On Monday it was as tiny as his nose.
 

By Tuesday, on and on it grows!
 

By Wednesday, it stretches as far as his ears!
 

By Thursday, it looks as if it has grown for years!
 
But on Friday, Mr. Lou caught the flu,
Aaah, aaah, aaaaaahhhhchooooo!
 
On the last "achoo," I pulled the mustaches off his face and threw them at the kids!  They shrieked with delight!
 
The wording is a little awkward, but they are so interested in what's happening to Mr. Lou that I don't think anyone really notices. 
 
This was really fun and I can see us using this felt set and rhyme over and over again in future story times!
 
Thanks for stopping by!

Thanks to Mel's Desk for hosting the roundup this week!  Flannel Friday is for anyone interested in finding and sharing great flannel board ideas!  You can learn more about Flannel Friday and how to participate here.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Guerilla Storytime Recap - 2015 OLC Convention and Expo

On October 9, 2015, over twenty librarians gathered together during the last session of the OLC Convention and Expo in Cincinnati, Ohio to participate in a Guerrilla Story Time.  What is Guerrilla Story Time you ask?  Call it a program, advocacy, or a movement of awesomeness, Guerrilla Story Time was conceived by the Joint Chiefs at Story Time Underground and is spreading across North America.  Please check out their website for more.  We thank them for permission and guidance as we brought G.S. to the OLC for our first time.  Library Village, along with a bunch of our new best friends, spent a fun filled hour discussing all things story time.  The hour flew by as the conversation didn't stop for a minute.   Hopefully everyone who participated left with a few new ideas!  We know we did.


By the way, have you ever heard of a CANJO?  Yep - we talked about that too!  You'll have to read on to learn about that one.  We almost had a hard time keeping up with the great ideas; but here we go with the recap of our first Guerilla Storytime.



Question #1: What do you do when a parent won't respond to their kid's disruptive/inappropriate behavior? Act it out.


  • Being direct is best policy.
  • Be kind.
  • Stop storytime and ask where the child's adult is.
  • Do some housekeeping before you start storytime.  Ask adults for help and remind them that it is okay to leave.
  • Talk to the adult afterwards.  Remember to use loving body language.

Question #2: When planning storytime, how do you ensure the space and activities are accessible to participants with physical limitations?

(Although we didn't quite answer this question, some good ideas were discussed about how to set up the room for the best possible parent/child interactions during storytime.)


  • Get rid of the chairs.  Parents will need to sit with their child.
  • No second row of chairs.  Parents do not participate as well from the second row.
  • Create a half moon with your chairs.
  • For crafts, keep tables folded flat on the floor.  This will help with direct parent interaction.

Question #3: How do you make transitions between activities manageable for kids, esp. sensory storytime? Act it out.


  • Transition songs.
  • Positive reinforcement. Great job!
  • Offer activities after storytime.
  • Put items in a bag or blanket. Say good-bye!
  • Sing, "If you want to hear a story, clap your hands." (To the tune of "If You're Happy and You Know It")
  • Let them keep the shaker, ribbon, etc.  If only a couple children have problems parting with a prop, it may be better to let it go.  (insert earworm.. you're welcome!) Mom will usually be able to deal with it and return it to you shortly.  
  • Ask kids to give the item to a puppet.  (Shout out to Reggie the puppet!)
  • Take three deep breaths with hands up.
  • Make your voice quiet.  
  • Use eye contact.
  • Ask for hands to be in laps.
  • Teach the yoga move, Dragon's Breath.  Place two fingers on your mouth, take three breaths in, and blow out the wiggles!
  • Rug Rules
    I found several great posters about Rug Rules online.

(There was a small side discussion about whether kids should be sitting criss cross applesauce.  Several participants remembered reading articles debating this sitting position.  Might be something to look into further if you are interested!)


Question #4: WILD CARD - The audience may pose a question. 

How do you keep toddlers from eating bubbles?  

(Interesting question!  A bubble machine is used at the end of a toddler storytime and the little ones enjoy popping them with mouths, not their hands!  Both the librarian and the parents have tried to dissuade the behavior with no luck.  This one stumped the group a bit.  But here is what we came up with!)


  • It's normal and okay.  
  • Make a game out of popping the bubbles with their hands instead of their mouths.
  • Look for edible bubbles or safe bubbles.

Question #5: Challenge: Sing your closing song.


  • "It's Time to Say Goodbye to All Our Friends" (To the tune of "She'll Be Coming 'Round the Mountain")
  • Ring Around a Rosie
(The question was posed about using a closing song if storytime isn't over, but rather turning into a craft time or play time.)

  • Use the song as a good-bye to sitting still and a transition to the next activity.
  • "If You're Happy and You Know It" is celebratory not good-bye.
  • Before singing, explain to the kids what they are doing next. 
  • It can be helpful to talk about what activities are left throughout storytime so they know what to expect.
  • Be consistent. Do the same thing each week.

 

Question #6: We briefly discussed how to change aspects of your storytime.  What do you do if storytime becomes boring to you?


  • Change a little bit at a time to keep the structure of your storytime.
  • Offer creative play time instead of more organized crafts.
  • Create stations to change out activities.  However, this may involve more set up.
  • For toddlers, offer stuffed toys to play with as well as coloring activities.

 

Question #7: We took some time to talk using ukuleles doing storytime?


  • To make it easier to play and keep control of your group, plan time for touching before you begin to play.
  • Parents are forgiving of skill level.
  • They are not hard to play.
  • Ukuleles can be purchased at local music stores.
  • They are easier to learn than guitars.
  • Don't be afraid of it!
  • There is an app for tuning ukuleles.  (Recommended by several in the room)
  • When in doubt, google it!  There are lots of great blogs with children's songs available for you to use.
  • Ukulele too complicated for you?  Try a canjo!  It's a homemade instrument made from a can, a stick, and one strong.
    A homemade canjo, in case you were wondering what one looks like. 

Question #8: What's your favorite fingerplay?


  • Five little monkeys (Using monkey mitts)
  • The monkey and the crocodile (the crocodile can even spit the monkeys out!)
(This question turned into a conversation about using possible "scary" rhymes or stories during storytime, such as The Three Little Pigs.)

  • Know your audience.
  • Recognize that some stories can be scary.
  • Preschoolers may be better at handling "scarier" endings than toddlers.
(And the conversation changed directions again!  This time we discussed briefly the joy of reading books to preschoolers about bodily functions, underwear, butts, etc.  Good times!)


Question #9: What's your favorite use of props in storytime?

  • Alphabet bean bags with windows showing objects from that letter of the alphabet.
    These can be purchased at Lakeshore Learning.

  • Interesting items brought from home - ex. cycling gear, musical instruments.
  • Box themed storytime - use different sized boxes to bang on during songs.
  • Time/clock themed storytime - touch and play with a toy clock.  Use it to tell the time in the stories read.  
  • A box is great for collecting smaller props in.
  • Supersize Storytime (An idea from the librarians at Grandview Heights Public Library) - librarians prerecord themselves and act out the stories with the use of props.  An example, The Three Little Pigs can be acted out with big cardboard houses and kids sticking out of cutout windows as the pigs.

Question #10: A parent says (loudly) that they miss the other storytime leader. What do you do?


  • Let them know that you loved him/her too and you know you have big shoes to fill.
  • Just be yourself! They will soon forget.
  • We all do storytimes differently.  That's okay!
  • Turn the comment around and tell them how happy you are to meet them.
  • Acknowledge that transitions are hard.
  • If you are the librarian leaving, talk up the new person with the group.  Encourage them to be accepting and assist with the transition. If feasible, have the new librarian come to one of your storytimes so he/she can be introduced.
  • If you are only going to be gone temporarily, let your group know that someone new will be doing storytime the next week.  This will help them know what to expect.
(We briefly discussed whether all storytimes should be consistent at a library.  Sometimes multiple librarians share a program or session.  The suggestion was made that perhaps the same literacy skill could be used each week across storytimes for consistency.  It was also suggested that librarians ask their local kindergarten teachers what they would like their incoming kindergartners to know.)

Did you attend the session?  Please leave us a note in the comments so we can improve for next time!


Thank you to everyone who came and made our first Guerilla Storytime so much fun!  It may have been the last session on Friday, but you guys rocked! 


Thank you Emily Bayci for coming and snapping this photo of our awesome group!




Thursday, August 27, 2015

Flannel Friday Roundup August 28, 2015


What happened to summer?  It just seems like yesterday when it was Memorial Day and we were starting Summer Reading Program...and here we are the week before Labor day!  Library Village is back to blogging after a hiatus though and we couldn't be more excited about hosting this week's Flannel Friday ROUNDUP!!!



Let's get this party started!

First up is Kathryn from Fun With Friends at Story Time.  Kathryn is usually my first Flannel Friday Roundup post but she never disappoints.  Take a look at this darling camping set!  I always wanted to do a camping story time - and this set set is wonderful!  She takes her inspiration from Welcome to Storytime.  Check it out!




Roving Fiddlehead Kidlit works this weeks felt set in foam felt.  5 littles are very useful in story times for all groups because of the rhythms and predictability.  I love the snakes in the shape of an S so the set can be used in multiple themes for story time! Here are 5 little snakes with rhyme!




Laura from Literacious did exactly what all good children's librarians do - follow the best blogs, find the perfect 'something' to use in story time, felt something to go with it, and share for everyone else.  She found a great acorn song on Jbrary (and who doesn't love Jbrary???) and made an acorn to go with the song.  Hey guess what?  It's almost the perfect time for fall story times!  Check it out!




Lauren at the Dilly Dally starts her post with "This is going to be a boring blogpost" but it is SO NOT!  Making your own flannel boards is sometimes a necessary thing for lots of reasons  - budget, portability (outreach), or in this case, so every story timer can have their own board!  I am sure the moms in her story time love this idea as much as I do!



Awnali from The Librarian is on the Loose shows us that necessity is the mother of invention, since she needed a felt to go with her upcoming Library Story Time.  She took her inspiration from Storytime Katie.  Looks like her fun books will be spreading that 'Library Cheer' soon!



Finally Shawn from Read, Rhyme, and Sing brings us inspiration from Mel's Desk.  It is a fun, versatile game that can be adapted for many different themes and age groups.  Check out This is/This isn't!


I love that children's librarians are taking inspiration from each other and making something new - and especially sharing their inspiration with others.  It's such a great thing to see and to be part of it.  If you would like more information on Flannel Friday, make sure to visit the website http://flannelfridaystorytime.blogspot.com/ .  You can also find them on Pinterest, and Facebook and by following #flannelstorytime on Twitter!



Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, August 23, 2015

So we taught this class...

If you follow us regularly, you will discover quickly that we have this 'thing' for felt. It all started back in a medium sized library in Southwest Ohio where three children's librarian started sharing ideas as a team.  Next came inspiration from Mel's Desk, Story Time Katie, and the Flannel Friday Pinterest board.  With "SQUEE'S" of delight, a love-affair was born.

Which brings us to some of the things we have been working on in the past year!

You might remember we did a "poster session" at the Ohio Library Council's Convention and Expo in October of 2014.  Here is a link to that post if you would like to see more.


Soon after, we got a VERY kind email from the Division of Children's and Youth Services asking us if we would consider turning that poster session into a full program for the Children's and Youth Services Conference this year. Ummmm.........YEAH!!!

So how do we turn this poster session in to a 45 minute break-out session?  We decided that talking about our felt, with tips and tricks, was just not enough.  I mean, we could talk about our felt All.Day.Long. but we knew we had to do something different. Kristie and I decided to go with a hands-on felt extravaganza!  We brought our templates for our 5 Little Monsters set and had some pre-cut felt pieces, scissors, and sharpies so all of the participants could start making their own sets while we talked tips and tricks. Who doesn't like keeping their hands busy when in a presentation?  There was lots of lively discussion about how we store our felts, making your own felt board, and how to make some of our more intricate sets.



In the vein of our poster session, we also talked about making the most of your felt sets, by making sets that can be used in multiple ways.  We also gave a template for a monkey and a teddy bear, so the participants could use the bed we made in two more rhymes.  That's what it is all about - using your resources to save yourself time and money with your story time planning!


Once we got going, the conversation really flowed.  There were lots of questions, ideas, and sharing going on in that room!  Thank goodness for that - because this is what my presentation notes looked like after my first 5 minutes.  I was off script just past our introductions!


Of course we talked about all of our online peeps!  We wouldn't be where we are without YOU!  Our blogroll on the side of this post just scratches the surface of the awesomeness out there.  So go follow them.  Follow the Pinterest Flannel Friday board.  Go find Story Time Underground on Facebook.  View. Felt. Share. Credit. Repeat.  We are a community of amazing story time artists.  While Kristie and I were the ones at Kent State University sharing our love of felt, you all were there with us.  We salute you!

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Preschool Story Time - Cats!

Here at the Village, we are no strangers to using cats in our story times.  With a perfect plethora of material, the options are endless.  Quite frankly, I had little time to prepare for this one - but no matter!  What I lacked in planning I made up for in execution!  Here I will show what my plan actually was, then add some alternatives pulled from other story times we have done at Library Village.  I hope you enjoy them!



So What's it Like to be a Cat? - Karla Kuskin
In this darling book written in verse, a young boy asks his cat "What's it like to be a cat?"  The boy continues to interview his cat and discovers what his days are like.

Finger Play - a Kitten
A kitten is fast asleep under a chair (hide thumb under one hand).   
And Donald can’t find her anywhere!
He’s looked everywhere (Fingers circle eyes to look).   
Under a table (look under one hand).   
Under a bed (look under the other hand) 
He looked in a corner and then Donald said: “Come Kitty, Come Kitty (hands up to mouth) 
This milk is for you! (cup hands like a bowl) 
And out came the kitty calling “Mew Mew” (thumb walks across lap)
 


Or if you prefer, Miss Kristie completely rocked it with her Hey Diddle Diddle Felt Set:
 Click HERE for more on the Hey Diddle Diddle Set!


The Three Little Kittens - Galdone
This is an absolute classic nursery rhyme.  Paul Galdone has renewed many classic rhymes and tales with his fresh illustrations.  With this particular book, you can do the text a number of ways.  You can read it, of course, you can sing it, or you can do it as a felt set or finger play.  Check out some YouTube videos on how the tune goes.  It is really quite simple.  Truth be told, I learned a completely different tune growing up, so I left a lot of mom's baffled.  Luckily I could switch over to the 'right' tune so I could have moms sing along with me.


Activity - Matching Mittens

This activity couldn't come at a better time as we finish the The Little Kittens book and song!  Because imitation is the best form of compliment, I humbly snitched this idea from Storytime Katie.  I even used her photo from her blog because, quite frankly, I didn't improve any on this activity!!  Storytime Katie is the best and I thank her for providing me with some of 'my' best ideas.   Please visit Storytime Katie's Blog for more.

For this game, I handed out one of each of the mittens (mine were laminated paper mittens actually) and had the mitten mates on the clothes line behind me.  One by one (and not in any order), I pointed to one and asked who had the matching mitten?  Then the child could come up and place the mitten under the clothes pin with its mate.  The preschoolers had a really great time with this activity.

Pete The Cat - Eric Litwin

Alternate Felt Set for Pete The Cat!
This is the full set for Pete The Cat - I Love My White Shoes that I made quite a long time ago.  With so many kids in story time, he needed so many shoes so everyone could participate.

BUT -  I also made another Pete set with a standing Pete.  There are fewer shoes, but more options to use Pete with his other picture books:
Click HERE  for more on this set!


Did you hear the one about Grumpy Cat!  Immortalized in felt!
Click HERE for how I used this piece in story time.



Cat Secrets - Jeff Czekaj
I am a huge fan of Jan Thomas and really enjoy books where the characters appear to speak right to the reader.  Cat Secrets is written in the same vein.  The little listeners leave the book feeling like they tricked the cat into spilling all of their secrets.  Fun!


Craft - 3 Little Kittens Puppets
This is just a sample of the die-cuts I had available for the children to create their own Three Little Kittens puppet set.  I let them decorate them any way they wanted.  They made as many as they wanted too.  I wanted to encourage story retelling.  Definitely not a fancy craft, but sometimes the easy ones for us are the most enjoyable ones for the little ones.

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, May 4, 2015

Story Time Crafts - Dyed Pasta!

Miss Sue and I have both jumped into the world of dyed pasta for various children's programs, and it is always a hit! Dying pasta is inexpensive, easy to do, and really spices up those boring old macaroni necklaces!

Let's break it down - You'll need:
Pasta - any variety (not cooked)
Rubbing alcohol
Food coloring
Large plastic storage bags (like Ziploc)
A liquid measuring cup
A 1 cup measuring cup

These directions come from Real Life at Home, and are very easy to follow!

Pasta and measuring cup at the ready!
 
Either gel or liquid food coloring works just fine.

Step 1: Pour 1/4 cup rubbing alcohol into your gallon bag, and add several drops of food coloring.
Swish the bag around to mix well.
 
Step 2: Measure 1 to 2 cups of dry pasta and add to the bag.
(I used 1 cup for the elbows because they're smaller, and 2 cups for the rigatoni)

Swish some more to cover the pasta in dye!
 
Step 3: Zip up the bag (push the extra air out first) and lay it flat. Try to make sure the pasta is in a single layer.
I laid my bags in foil-lined pans, just in case any liquid leaked out (None did!).
 

Step 4: Flip the bags over about every half hour or so until they've reached the desired color. This is not an exact science - the world will not end if you don't flip them at exactly the 30 minute mark. (Or, say, if you happen to be a very sleepy, pregnant librarian who fell asleep after only flipping them once, and realized it the next morning. Whoops!)
 
 I made 6 different colors in about 30 minutes. Pink, orange, and yellow all dyed the fastest (within 2 to 3 hours), while blue and purple took quite a while longer (purple takes FOREVER).  Green was somewhere in the middle.
 
Step 5: Line those same pans with paper towels or newspaper, and dump your finished pasta onto them to dry. They will probably need to dry overnight.
 
Miss Sue and I each did this at home on our own time, but you could definitely do it at the library if you have somewhere to lay the bags where no one will mess with them. It sound messy but it really isn't at all.  You could even recruit some teen volunteers to help. It's kind of a fun science experiment!
 
 Think of all you can do with that glorious dyed pasta!
 
Rainbow necklaces!
This is great for practicing fine motor skills with preschoolers and Kindergartners!
 


It's also WONDERFUL for sensory play with babies and toddlers! Just make sure they don't eat it :o)
 
Now don't you want to go dye some pasta before your next story time? Try it out and let us know how it goes!
 
-Miss Kristen