Creative Kids Program at the Library
Creative Kids is a program that is special to me. Aimed at Kindergarten and First Grade students, Creative Kids combines my love of children's literature, theater and crafts. When I was a student at Wheelock College, I minored in theater. While there, I participated in a program that was called, Story Theater and we brought picture books to life by acting them out at local elementary schools. Story Theater was the inspiration for Creative Kids. Creative dramatics and Reader's Theater are the core of Creative Kids.
Each week, after I read a story to the group, we act it out (creative dramatics) either with different parts or do Reader's Theater. In Reader's Theater, some of the children are narrators while a few others act out the story. Many of the first grade children that I have currently and some of the kindergarteners are reading, so I have incorporated lots of reading of lines with them. Some of the stories that we have acted out this session are: Kumak's Fish by Michael Bania, Anansi and the Talking Melon by Eric Kimmel, and The Grouchy Ladybug by Eric Carle. We have had lots of laughs as we tackle these stories. For example, for Kumak's Fish the main character is ice fishing and is trying to pull a fish out of the water. But since the fish is stubborn, Kumak needs his family and the entire town to help him get the fish. The children need to work cooperatively together to help Kumak pull out the fish and were connected to Kumak in a long line.
Anansi and the Talking Melon is a trickster tale about a spider that gets stuck inside a melon. When Anansi is finished eating the melon, he can't get out so he decides to trick all of the animals that pick up the melon. Since they cannot see Anansi, they think the melon is talking! The children loved this story! We had some of the children be melons in the melon patch and they used a parachute to make a large melon. Anansi was inside the parachute with a flashlight as she said her lines. It really did give the illusion that the "melon" was talking! The rest of the children were the animals and a king that Anansi tricked.
Since Creative Kids began in 2014, we have acted out 45 stories! They are either picture books, fairy tales or folk tales. Everyone who signs up for this program loves to listen to the stories being read aloud, acting them out and doing the craft at the end. The craft is always associated with the story and the children always amaze me with their creativity.
Our next session of Creative Kids begins Thursday March 3-Thursday April 7. The final session of the year will be Thursday April 28-Thursday May 26. It is always held on Thursdays from 4:00-4:45. Registration is required. I look forward to more fun with every session of Creative Kids.