This post is more of a question and bit of wondering rather than any sort of definitive opinion/information on the subject. My standard operating procedure for conducting baby lapsit and toddler storytimes is to purchase age appropriate toys, put them in a storage box (tote!) and bring them out at the end of storytime for group play. At my last branch play time was a must. End of story. For both baby lapsit and toddler time. The kids would crawl or toddle to the bin where the toys were kept as soon as we sang our last song. They just knew what time it was. Even if I had a meeting scheduled for right after storytime, I quickly accepted the fact that I was going to be10 minutes late or else I would have some unhappy readers (I just heard this as a term to use instead of "patron" or "customer" and I LOVE it).
Now I'm all about the learning through play, believe me I have drank the kool aid on that one. I'm on board! And I recognize what a valuable social experience the after storytime can be for both children and their caregivers. However, I've noticed with my my teen moms the playtime is not working out so well. Especially with one group of mobile infants. As soon as I bring the toys out, and the babies are for one minute distracted by the goodies, the moms jet out of storytime. By the time I play the "Clean Up" song, at least 50% of my friends are having an abandonment melt down. So I'm wondering is this the best use of toys? What is a better way to learn through play with this age group? Should I avoid playtime, because after all they get tons of playtime at their infant center while mom is in class? Send me your thoughts!
P is also for PARTY! Because my sweet hunny bun just turned one and had a birthday party last weekend.
Tuesday, April 19, 2011