Kansas Summer Reading Workshop for SWKLS – Thursday, March 24, 2011

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3-24-11 Madame Poulet and Monsieur Roach are BFFs...


Today was my fifth library system in Kansas for my summer reading workshop tour. Today I went to Southwest Kansas Library System in Dodge City. We began the workshop with a fun creativity exercise in which the workshop participants had to create a self portrait out of items from their purses, pockets and wallets.

3-24-11 A creative self-portrait by a SWKLS Librarian made out of items from her purse

Then it was time for some draw and tell tales to open the workshop. First, we began with a story I created to represent China, “The Emperor’s Dragon,” which is in my Handmade Tales book.

3-24-11 The Emperor's Dragon, a story to represent China

I taught the librarians another draw and tell story, “Catching a Pest in 7 Steps,” which utilizes the numbers 1 through 7 to create the picture of a mouse. So cute!

3-24-11 The mouse from the story, Catching a Pest in 7 Steps from Handmade Tales

After showing the librarians a Japanese scroll story, Russian nesting dolls made of out paper, and “The Ugly Duckling,” we did the story of “Papa’s Teepee,” which turns into cool snowflakes made out of coffee filters!

3-24-11 Southwest Kansas Librarians create a blizzard from coffee filter snowflakes

Then it was time for “Bandana Man,” a fun version of “The Gingerbread Man.” First, they had to use their bandanas to make themselves into old women.

3-24-11 Look at the cute little old women from the story, Bandana Man

Then, they turned their bandanas into babies.

3-24-11 Librariaas crack up as they burp their babies

Finally, they folded their bandanas into Bandana Man! “Run, run, run as fast as you can. You can’t catch me, I’m Bandana Man!”

3-24-11 Librarians made Bandana Man, an adaptation of The Gingerbread Man

Then it was time for string figure stories. I taught them “The Stubborn Turnip” and how to make a string star. It’s so adorable!

3-24-11 Stephanie is a star! Woo hoo!

I also showed them how to make the “One Snip Star,” creating a five pointed star with just one snip of the scissors. Very cool!

3-24-11 The One-Snip Star! Too cool!

After lunch, we switched gears and did Tangram Tales. After demonstrating Tangrams and teaching the librarians how to create a set out of Fun Foam, I challenged them to an “Invent-A-Tangram” Contest. Look at the winning Tangram! I love it!!

3-24-11 The winning Invent-A-Tangram - A woman in the tub reading a book

When it was time for the Tangram Story Theater, these librarians got revved up! They performed “Tigers Tales, Anansi’s Stories” and had a fantastically fun story chorus singing, “Feel the story beat, feel the story beat, shake-a-shake-a-shake, shake-a-shake-a-shake. Feel the story beat, feel the story beat, shake-a-shake-a-shake, shake-a-shake-a-shake. UH!!” The storytellers involved the audience with participation and sound effects and the Tangram artists made every Tangram perfect! It was AWESOME!!

3-24-11 The Queen Bee Tangram in Tiger's Tale, Anansi's Stories Tangram story theater

The last part of the workshop focused on “Picture Book Make and Takes.” I showed them activities for The Cajun Cornbread Boy, Mama’s Bayou, and The Gigantic Sweet Potato. Then I performed Madame Poulet and Monsieur Roach with Johnny and his roach friends…

3-24-11 Monsieur Roach and friends party like it's 1999!

It was so much fun seeing all the “roaches” on the ground, legs up! Hahahahaha!

3-24-11 Madame Poulet's aftermath - no more roaches partying in her house!

I ended with show them my new book, There’s a Dragon in the Library and all the activities that go with it. Look at this accordion dragon made by Millie Dearden!

3-24-11 Millie is a cutie with her accordion dragon puppet!

I worked with such a phenomenal group of librarians! Thank you so much for your energy and hospitality. Sara McFarland, I hope you feel better… here’s a hug! Then it was time to get the heck out of Dodge (I have always wanted to say that! LOL) and head to Salina, Kansas, a three hour drive from Dodge City. On the way, I caught this cool picture near a wind farm. It looks sort of like a tornado funnel forming but it was just rain…

3-24-11 It looks like a funnel is forming in the Kansas plains but it's just rain...

But on the way to Salina, there was hail! Lots of it! Kansas weather is always an adventure! Thank you to Charlene and her hubby, Ed, for transporting me from Dodge City to Salina. We stopped to eat at Woody’s Smokehouse in Great Bend. Look at all these barbecue sauces!

3-24-11 The many barbecue sauces of Woody's Smokehouse in Great Bend, Kansas

Another great day in the fair state of Kansas! Tomorrow is my last summer reading workshop in Kansas. I’m looking forward to meeting another cool group of librarians!

Until next time…

Warmly, Dianne