I don’t always recap programs in the Nibble, but this week, I felt like I was back on the horse with my regular school year programs and wanted to share! While I was gone to ARSL last month, I missed my very first Book Worms program of the fall (which Kip was kind enough to handle in my absence). I missed it terribly, so this week, I got to see my regular group for the first time since April (we don’t have Book Worms in the summer due to other programming)! Book Worms is a monthly program (now expanded to twice a month to accommodate all the kiddos) for five to eight year old children where we read a story and do a themed activity to go along with it. These programs are typically forty-five minutes and are easily some of my favorites.
It has been a slow build in the three years that I’ve been doing school age programming, but with a little bit of careful planning, targeted marketing, and rebranding, I now have a pretty sizable loyal following of children for this program series, and that’s the biggest part of why it is so fun. I love getting to know them and learning all their little personality quirks. They are hilarious, energetic, and (most of the time) sweet.
This month, we read Goldfish Ghost by Lemony Snicket, a quirky, light-hearted ghost story about a fish who finds itself a ghost one day and decides to venture out and look for a friend. Lisa Brown’s charming illustrations, featuring an expressionless, white, upside down goldfish (complete with flopped over ventral fin), are the real stars of this picture book. And as it turns out, several of my kiddos could relate to having a dead goldfish. We had a few conversations about past beloved pets, some remembering fondly the bonds that were shared, another recalling (a little bitterly perhaps?) how their sibling brought about the creature’s demise. Overall, it was a nice little Halloween-adjacent story to start off October and a great way for children to access and discuss their own memories of the death of a pet without being too heavy.
For our extension activity, the children made their own goldfish ghosts to take home. Below is my sample adapted from this adorable post. I left out the game element, so no hooks or prizes hidden inside; just handmade, ghostly friends to take home. =)