Part of my re-vamped bilingual storytime plan included monthly visits to read bilingual stories at one of our elementary schools. This school has the highest number of Hispanic kids and ELL families, and the school librarian agreed to let me come read to every single K, 1, and 2 class during library time the last week of each month. I love reading to older kids, and I was super excited to share stories in Spanish, highlight Hispanic authors and illustrators, and make some more connections with the kids.
I figured I could probably bank on at least one kid in each class knowing who I am, and fortunately I was right (although some just remembered me as “the lady who wore the costume“). Most classes had at least one kid who knew a little Spanish, and my favorite part was watching their eyes light up when I spoke to them in Spanish and seeing the pride on their faces as they told me that they/their dad/grandma/mom/uncle speaks Spanish too!
This Family Fun Night was held at a local elementary school for the Head Start class. This year they have a high number of Hispanic kids and I love doing bilingual storytime with this group.
The Head Start Family Fun Nights always start with a free dinner, and families that need transportation are bussed to the school. Rather than just a storytime, the teacher wanted something for this event that would really encourage parent/child playing and interactions as well as literacy. Some of her kids never play (or read) with their parents, and she wanted to provide an opportunity for play and learning for both parents and kids. So I came up with a super easy and fun Not a Box program!
One of our local elementary schools is working on an initiative against poverty, and this winter they contacted me to see if there was a way to highlight the resources that the public library offers. I was thrilled with the idea, and we came up with a Public Library Party, held here at the library, that the whole school was invited to!
Zoom, Zoom, Zoom is one of my storytime favorites. I swear, this song is preschooler crack. They ALWAYS request it before I even say what song we’re going to do. We go to the moon, we go to the stars, we go to Mars or Saturn, sometimes we go super fast and we always go back to earth really quietly so we can read another story.
This year, I’ve been adding in more Spanish to my outreach storytimes, and recently a kid asked for Zoom Zoom Zoom in Spanish! I couldn’t find a Spanish version anywhere, so I created my own. Here you go!
Zoom, Zoom, Zoom: Vamos a la luna
Zoom, zoom, zoom Vamos a la luna. Zoom, zoom, zoom Vamos a la luna.
Si quieres viajar conmigo Súbete al cohete
Zoom, zoom, zoom Vamos a la luna. En 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 ¡Despegar!
Last fall, we didn’t offer bilingual storytime at the library. This was a really tough decision for me to make, and something that definitely made me feel like a failure. Bilingual storytime was something I was proud of, something I had started as soon as I was hired, and one of the biggest ways our library was serving Spanish speakers and creating awareness about diversity in our community.
This fall, I took bilingual storytime on the road! In order to reach a new and bigger audience, I offered programs at a local church and at our private Catholic elementary school, both in the evening. Not knowing anything about numbers or ages of who my audience would be, I mostly used my normal bilingual storytime outline, with some additions to tweak it for different ages.