We are in week two of our summer storytime ideas series. Each week we gather in our local park to read great books for kids together with our neighbors. This week we featured Jamberry by Bruce Degen and doing some super fun Jamberry book activities.
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Storytime Ideas: Jamberry
Berries, berries and more berries is what you will find in this rhythmic story of a bear and boy who go on a berry adventure. The illustrations in Jamberry are full of all kinds of berries too. After reading, you will definitely be ready to eat berry jam on something!
Degen was inspired to write the book from his fond memories of picking berries with his grandparents in the fields when he was young. He vividly remembers eating their bounty with sour cream and sugar while blueberry pie and blackberry jam were being made.
The Group Activities
Pop Goes the Berry
We sang this cute interactive song about berries. You can watch it below. And go to the Jbrary site for the words to Pop Goes the Berry.
ABC Berry Sort
For our storytime activity, I created printable ABC berries. I cut them apart and placed the berries into recycled berry containers. Each family was given a container of berries to sort. Possible sorts included: sorting by color, sorting by type of berry, and sorting/ordering the letters in alphabetical order.
As storytime ended, we held a giveaway for a copy of the book and a jar of strawberry jam!
Skill building: sorting, categorizing and sequencing
Children would be delighted to pick berries. You may be lucky enough to have berries growing in your own yard. We planted three blueberry bushes in the fall and look forward to blueberries in a few years. Until then we visit local farms when the berries are in season. Check for farms in your local area for berry picking schedules in the spring and early summer.
Making jam can be pretty easy. We love to make freezer jam because we don’t have to go through the canning process. We just pop our jars into the freezer. It’s so nice to have homemade jam in the winter. We like to use the reduced-sugar freezer jam recipe from Creative Chicks.
Let the kids count the berries for a little math practice as they help prepare the jam.
Have a berry tasting party. Select a variety of berries (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries, mulberries, etc.). For dessert one night, have the kids create a pattern on a skewer with the berries. Serve with a dipping sauce made with sour cream sweetened with sugar or honey. Using tally marks create a chart of which berry each family member liked the best for some extra math practice.
More Berry Themed Books
The Little Mouse, the Red Ripe Strawberry and the Big Hungry Bear by Don and Audrey Wood
Blueberries for Sal by Robert McCloskey
Blueberry Shoe by Ann Dixon
For more storytime ideas to go along with the book, Jamberry, follow our Storytime Ideas Pinterest board.
Follow Jodie Rodriguez @ Growing Book by Book’s board Storytime Ideas on Pinterest.
Join us again next week when we feature the book, The Deep Blue Sea by Audrey Wood.