Ari and I went to the library for story time yesterday. As soon as we entered the children’s room, I made eye contact with the children’s librarian, and I knew something was wrong.

“I have to sit at the desk, can you do story time today?” She pleaded with me.
“Uh…okay…” I said. I was barely caffeinated and certainly not prepared with material for 0-4 year olds, but I didn’t want to let the group down. I quickly scanned the library shelves for age appropriate material and went through my mental rolodex for songs to perform.
I had a rough start.
The books I picked were way too long for the group. By the third page of a book where the protagonist draws all over her bedroom wall with crayons, two toddler girls were screaming at the top of their lungs and bludgeoning each other with giant lady bug shaped pillows. Ari was sitting at the front of the room with me pointing out all the colors in the story very loudly.
The songs were a bigger hit than the story. I did the color song. It goes like this:
“Red, red is the color I see.
If you’re wearing red then show it to me.
Stand up and turn around, show me your red and then sit down.”
The kids who are wearing the particular color you’re singing about have to get up and dance. They loved it.
I also did some old standards like Old McDonald and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. After we sang Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, I let them in on a little secret.
“Did you know that Twinkle Twinkle Little Star has the same melody as another song?”
I made them guess what song it was. Someone guessed right!
“Yes! The alphabet song!” Naturally, we sang the A-B-C song after that.
After some songs, I proceeded to read more books that they couldn’t focus on, and there was more hitting and screaming. I kept saying:
“Okay! On the count of five we’re going to sit back down on the rug!” They would sit on the rug and then get bored and start running around again.
The librarian is on vacation for 10 days starting next week. She asked me to come back and do story time again. I felt too badly to say no.

Any suggestions for age appropriate books?