A Very Special Storytime

Sunday’s storytime was a bit different from our regular storytime. This week’s Sunday storytime was very special because it was in honor of Edwyna Gilbert, a children’s literature professor at the University of Kansas for 26 years as well as was president of Friends in Council; the KU Friends of the Library, and also at one time conducted storytimes at the Lawrence Public Library. Edwyna’s niece donated the above painting, “Tomorrow Will Be Saturday” in honor of Edywna to be hung in the children’s room of the Lawrence Public Library. So to celebrate Edwyna and the induction of the painting to the library’s children’s room, I was asked to create a storytime in her memory.

Storytime Lineup:

Edwina, The Dinosaur Who Didn’t Know She Was Extinct by Mo Willems

This book and the next are both books donated to the library by the P.E.O sisterhood in honor of Edwyna. Edwyna went by both Edwyna and Edwina.

The Little Engine That Could by Watty Piper

Also a book donated to the library in honor of Edywna Gilbert, this is a classic that not only the kids were familiar with, but that the majority of the audience had read with their children and grandchildren.

Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

Edwyna loved the Caldecott Medal Winners, so I thought reading the 1964 Caldecott winner Where the Wild Things Are would make a nice addition to the lineup.

Otto the Book Bear by Katie Cleminson

This book was published after Edwyna’s death, but I thought it would be the perfect representation of Edwyna’s love of children’s literature and her love of the library.

Suncatcher Craft:

I had a hard time coming up with what craft to do for this storytime. I didn’t want to use paints with such a large group, but I wanted the craft to represent the painting “Tomorrow Will Be Saturday”. I finally came up with an alteration of this suncatcher craft from Squidoo.

I made mine to reflect the painting, but of course the kids were free to do any interpretation they wished. We only used tissue paper colors that were in the painting and the majority of the frames were the same teal the painting was matted in.

I apologize from not taking step-by-step pictures for this craft. It’s been a little nuts this summer. But it’s so easy I don’t even think you’ll need it.

Materials needed: Clear contact paper, cardstock, tissue paper, and scissors.

How To:

1. Cut a frame out of card stock. It doesn’t have to be a rectangle like the one above. It can be a heart, circle, pumpkin, sun, anything you can imagine.

2. Cut tissue paper into small 1/2-1 inch squares.

3. Cut out two pieces of clear contact paper. The pieces need to be larger than the cardstock frame.

4. Peel one sheet of the contact paper and lay it sticky side up. Place the cardstock frame in the center.

5. Stick pieces of tissue paper on the sticky contact paper within the frame.

6. Once your finished with your suncatcher design, peel the back of the other piece of contact paper and lay it stick side down onto the suncatcher so that each side is covered in contact paper.  Smooth out air bubbles.

7. Trim off remaining contact paper around the outside of the frame.

Was so wonderful meeting friends of Edwyna and learning about her legacy.

It was truly a very special day at the library.


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  1. […] This idea came from a comment by jmik.(you can read her comment below)  Great idea.  Here are a few examples that might work.  One is made with clear contact paper, but you could use a laminated sheets too.  It is from Sturdy for Common Things. […]

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