Storytime and Standards

I've been aware of my state's early childhood standards for a few years now, but it wasn't until I was contracted for a small project to help seed a database with storytime plans that I really spent time thinking how they might be applied to storytimes.

Lest you be mistaken, I'm not one of those "everyone sit down look at the teacher and don't even think about moving your body or your mouth for the next 30 minutes" kinds of librarians. (Do I even know any librarians like that? Hmmm). At any rate, I'm the kind of person who finds brain research, knowledge from other practitioners like occupational and speech therapists, inspiration from current events, new books, or other librarians super fascinating and interesting, but my goal is to use all of that to craft fun, playful, developmentally appropriate learning experiences centered around books and story.

So my challenge to myself this program year was, how could I utilize the domains and components of the early childhood standards to inform my storytime planning?

Here's what the overarching planning and development phase looked like:

I printed hard copies of our state's early childhood indicators of progress for birth to 3 and 3 to 5 and put them in a 3-ring binder.

Then I wrote out a list of every date I had Rock, Rattle, and Rhyme (Birth to 3) and Family Storytime (All ages, but targeted presentation for 3-5 year olds). I filled in places where I knew I already had special guests or other plans already made for the entire program year (Sept-May in my case).

I wanted to work my way through the domains and components as closely as they were presented in the documents, realizing of course, that overall human development isn't necessarily a linear process. But these documents were developed by lots of early childhood educators and specialists and it would seem likely to me that the order of things wasn't just random.

I made one significant exception in the Birth to 3 category. I decided to move much of domain 4, physical and motor development, to the end of the program year. As I had 30 dates to fill with 14 components, I will repeat all 14 twice, and both fine motor development and exploration and discovery will get a third date because they seemed easy to translate into storytimes.

With the 3-5 category, synchronicity prevailed and I had 21 components to place into 21 dates, so no adjusting needed to be made.

I placed the master lists of components and dates in the front of each section. This way, when it's time to plan some storytimes, I can just grab the binder and have everything at my fingertips.

Stay tuned for my storytime plans and thoughts about the experience!



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