Thursday, March 6, 2014

Kidding Around: St Patrick's Day Party

We call our monthly programs for Grades K-2nd "Kidding Around", and our theme this month was a St. Patrick's Day Party. Despite the snow on the ground and the winter weather not showing signs of letting up, it is that time of year.

For all "Kidding Around" programs I require registration, mainly because I serve snacks and need to know how much to purchase. I usually set registration for 12 kids, which seems to work well in our small town. At our St. Patrick's Day Party we ended up with 10 showing up. I have many regular attendees and most are good about showing up as planned.

Here are our tables before the event:

I always make sure one table has books on the topic for the kids to check out.

Crafts supplies and snacks.

We started out with a quick discussion of what St. Patrick's Day is. With this age group the talk basically centered on leprechauns, green and Ireland. I wanted to include a few fun facts here, but had trouble finding any that I felt would hold the kid's interest.

Our first game was a relay race. The kids had to perform the actions written on shamrocks I had cut out. Actions included walking backwards, skipping, spinning and quacking like a duck. First team to each perform their action and run back to the finish line was the winner. The sneaky literacy component to this game was reading the instructions.

Our shamrocks before the relay race

Next we played "Hide the Gold" with a penny. Instructions can be found here. The kids got a kick out of trying to keep poker faces to hide when they had the coin. I also quickly showed them this trick.

Our final game was musical chairs with Irish themed music. Once a child was out of the game I allowed them to be in charge of stopping the music, which they seemed to enjoy. 

We finished the program with a craft and snack as usual. Our craft was painting shamrock hats. I found the idea here.

All ready to wear for St. Patrick's Day.

Our snack was cupcakes, green Hawaiian Punch, Lucky Charms, and St. Patrick's Day cookies.

A before shot of the cupcakes.

Overall, this program went well. I got some positive feedback from a parent afterwards, which is always nice. Working at a small library, I think it is important to provide some "just for fun" programs in order to bring kids in. I want them to see the library as a fun place to be. At this program in particular, books on the topic got checked out, and kids got reading logs for my March Reading Program, so I consider those positives as well.

As always, feel free to use these ideas or let me know if you have any questions :)

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