Falling in Love with Books
Around this time each year at the Brandywine River Museum of Art, we take an opportunity to help local families “fall” in love with reading and spending time at the Museum through our Children’s Read-Aloud Tour. During these Thursday morning programs each Thursday morning October 5 – November 16 young children and their grown-ups hear a story, interact with art in the Museum and make their own creative works, with themes related to the story of the day.
As this year’s Read-Aloud program quickly approaches, we sat down with Assistant Educator, Liesl Reimann, known to the Read-Aloud world as Miss Liesl, to discuss what’s new this fall.
Can you tell a little about what changes families can expect to see this year?
Before the start of the Read-Aloud program, we have time to wait as all the children and families arrive. I really wanted a way to engage the families who came early in a fun and interactive way and so I started setting up a table with a few quiet activities that promote cooperative learning. I try to pick activities that cater to a wide number of ages, skill levels, and interests.
What are some examples of table activities?
For week one of Read-Aloud on October 5, we are reading Triangle by Mac Barnett, and focusing on shapes.
Popsicle Stick Shapes: Arrange magnetic popsicle sticks to create shapes on a magnetic board.
Shape Sorter: Sort foam shapes into the appropriately- marked section of a cupcake tray.
Cardboard Shapes: Build and play with magnetic cardboard shapes.
Shape I-Spy Sheet: Find and count the various types of shapes on an activity sheet.
Books: Discover other books that discuss shapes.
Why would families be excited for these activities?
These activities allow families who come early to engage and learn together while waiting for the program to start.
The activities introduce the theme of the day’s book and tour. They also enhance hand-eye coordination, fine motor skills, gross motor skills, communication, and pre-writing and reading skills.
The activities are easy to replicate at home so that the learning may continue after families leave the Museum.
What is your favorite of the table activities?
There are so many but I would have to say that my favorite is the Feed the Frog activity for November 9 when we will read Over and Under the Pond by Kate Messner. Using items from a grocery store, I created a frog container. Kids will use child sized tweezers to pick up plastic bugs and insert them into the frog’s open mouth to “feed” him. Not only does this help teach what a frog eats but also the children practice hand-eye coordination and also the finger- pincher skill, which is key for pre-writing.
How can families sign up for the Read-Aloud program?
Families can contact me at 610.388.8382 or firstname.lastname@example.org to register for the program or get more information.
Thursday mornings, October 5 through November 16, 10:30 a.m.
October 5: Triangle by Mac Barnett
October 12: The Crayons' Book of Colors by Drew Daywalt
October 19: Wonderfall by Michael Hall
October 26: Bats at the Library by Brian Lies
November 2: Art and Max by David Wiesner
November 9: Over and Under the Pond by Kate Messner
November 16: Counting with the Barefoot Critters by Teagan White
The cost is $5 per child, with one adult admitted free per child and free for members. We look forward to seeing everyone Thursday mornings this fall!