Flannel Friday: Creating Conversation

Like many of you, ECRR principles guide my storytime plans. What I love most about flannel boards is their ability to help us talk, sing, read, and play (not write so much, unless you hire some preschoolers to make your felts for you!) in a natural, fun way. We sing with them, use them to tell our favorite stories, play Little Mouse 89 million ways, and just… talk.

This month in storytime we’re exploring the weather and I use felt boards two different ways to do this. First, we sing our weather song and pick which felt pieces line up with the weather that day (and also earlier today and last night and when they were in the car on the way here and last Christmas). This felt board comes from While She Naps, although I discovered it from Storytime Katie (and borrowed pretty heavily from her interpretation).

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The first time I used this, I found it wasn’t entirely satisfactory for my preschoolers. It was partially sunny, but the clouds are grey! It’s not THAT sunny, they told me. Another asked me what we would do if it was raining but not a thunderstorm.

So I created more pieces, which took all of ten minutes (most of that was waiting for my hot glue gun to heat up). We have the possibility for a lot more combinations and rich conversation. What color are the clouds? How many are there? Is it raining hard, or just a little bit?

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Now we sing our weather song and decide which of the first six pieces best fit the day’s weather. Then we build upon that and they start putting names and concepts together. We’re having increasingly complex conversations about the weather really easily- something we do all the time without even thinking about! We teach colors, one-to-one correspondence, even geometry simply by putting up felt pieces and singing our songs and letting kids talk. If that’s not super cool, I don’t know what is.

Flannel Friday is being hosted right here this week! Post your links and check back on Saturday for the round-up!

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