About 6 weeks ago, I saw a sign at the library announcing “Storytime Boxes”. The description of the boxes is as follows:
Box of preschool storytime items each based upon a central theme; for educational purposes. Box contains picture books, resource materials, DVDs and CDs to make the learning experience fun.
I was in the middle of figuring out a plan for preschool and this looked great. They are designed for preschools and day cares but I was told homeschoolers and parents can use them as well. As soon as I got home, I started searching for them on the library’s website. I had a hard time locating them but eventually did and requested the Dr. Seuss box. That is one thing, you have to request the boxes online.
And I waited. And I waited. And I waited some more. Finally Saturday, I got the call to come pick up my box. I didn’t have time on Saturday so today I picked it up. The box is huge, it’s a big rubbermaid type crate and it’s heavy and bulky.
Inside the box were Dr. Seuss books and lots of them
The books included where: Cat in the Hat: Cat in the Hat Comes Back: One Fish, Two Fish; Hop on Pop; Fox in Socks; Oh Say Can You Say; Green Eggs and Ham; The Foot Book; My Many Colored Days; I Can Read With My Eyes Shut; Marvin K. Mooney, Will You Please Go Now; Gerald McBoing Boing; Wacky Wednesday; Ten Apples on Top; I’m Not Going To Get Up Today; and I Wish I Had Duck Feet.
It’s a good collection, but I’m sad it’s missing some of the classics and favorites such as: The ABC Book; The Butter Battle Book; Yurtle the Turtle; Horton Hears a Who, and a few others.
Also in the box were an activity packet, a CD, a DVD, a puppet, and a book about activities for infants and toddlers.
In the activity packet where some coloring pages, suggested activities, and patterns for crafts to go with I Wish I Had Duck Feet. I wasn’t impressed with the activity packet. One of the suggested activities was for Yurtle the Turtle, yet the book wasn’t included in the box. I think a simple google search would yield more activities than the activity packet provides. It does give a list of links to find more activities, so that is helpful. It also contain 3 color sheets that you can copy. I think the library could have done a better job with this packet.
The CD and DVD are nice. The CD is a Greg and Steve CD and the DVD has a few Dr. Seuss cartoons. The kidlets loved the DVD. We will probably keep the box for the full 3 weeks, just for these two things.
The puppet is adorable, but it’s Horton and there was no Horton book in the box to reference the puppet.
So the pros – it’s puts together books of one theme for you in a box, the DVD and CD are cute. The puppet seems to be good quality and cute. You can check out the boxes for 3 weeks at a time and renew it one time. The boxes are new, so I am curious to see how the puppets hold up over time.
The cons – The activity packet lacks substance. You can’t choose the books you want for the theme, they are chosen for you. It took 6 weeks for us to get our request, so it would be hard to plan around them, since you can only have one out at a time.
Final thoughts - I may use them to over the summer, but because they are hard to plan around, I wouldn’t use them for preschool. I thought they would save me time planning, but they won’t. I could put a list of books and activities together on my own just as easily.
I had high hopes for these storytime boxes, I’m sadly disappointed in them. And I’m not the only one that feel’s this way, my friend A, had almost the same opinion.