Toddler Programs Chapter

Swingin’ With the Monkeys

Books to Share

  • Monkey Do! by Allan Ahlberg.
  • Five Little Monkeys Sitting in a Tree by Eileen Christelow.
  • Monkey Business by Paul Stickland.
  • Monkey Trouble by David Martin.
  • Ten Monkey Jamboree by Dianne Ochiltree.

Books to Show and Booktalk

  • Don't Wake up Mama! by Eileen Christelow.
  • Five Little Monkeys Wash the Car by Eileen Christelow.
  • Spunky Monkeys on Parade by Stuart J. Murphy.


Prepare “monkey bread” for the children to enjoy. Roll out biscuit dough and cut into small circles with a cookie or biscuit cutter. Butter a large ring mold, Bundt pan, or shallow baking pan. Melt enough butter to coat each biscuit thoroughly. Dip each biscuit into the melted butter and place it in the pan. Overlap biscuits as you continue until the pan is about 3/4 full. Sprinkle with a little cinnamon and sugar if desired. Bake at 350 degrees for about 25 minutes. Turn out onto a serving tray. This is a shared eating experience as each person pulls off a piece of bread to enjoy.

Or, provide dried banana chips, available at many grocery stores and health food stores.


Monkey See, Monkey Do

(Traditional. Encourage the children to do what the monkey does. Continue adding additional actions as long as you and the children like.)

Monkey, monkey

Munch on bananas (Pretend to eat)

Monkey, monkey

Stomp your feet (Stomp feet)

Monkey, monkey

Clap your hands (Clap hands)

Monkey, monkey

Cover your eyes (Cover eyes)

Monkey, monkey

Jump up and down (Jump up and down)


Monkey In The Tree

(Adapted by Shelly Lane. Sing to the tune of "The Farmer in the Dell.")

The monkey in the tree,

The monkey in the tree.

He peels a banana and winks at me,

The monkey in the tree.

Audio Recordings

“Here Sits a Monkey” on The Singable Songs Collection by Raffi.

Flannel Boards

Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed

(Use this folk rhyme as a flannel board or story glove activity. Monkey and bed patterns are provided.)

Five little monkeys jumping on the bed

One fell off and bumped its head.

Mommy called the doctor, and the doctor said,

"No more monkeys jumping on the bed!" (Shake your finger)

(Repeat, counting down the monkeys and taking one off the flannel board or glove each time, until there are “No more monkeys jumping on the bed!”)

Five Little Monkeys and a Crocodile

(Folk rhyme. Place five monkeys on the flannel board or story glove. If you use a story glove, also use a crocodile hand puppet if you have one.)

Five little monkeys, sitting in a tree,

Teasing Mr. Crocodile, “You can’t catch me!”

Along comes crocodile, as quiet as can be,


Four little monkeys, sitting in a tree,

Teasing Mr. Crocodile: “You can’t catch me!”…

Continue the rhyme until the last monkey says, “SNAP! Ha, ha, you missed me!”


Monkeys Jumping on the Bed

  • Monkey pattern
  • Construction paper or poster board
  • Copy paper
  • Crayons
  • Glue sticks

Pre-cut two or three monkeys and a bed for each child using the patterns. Let the children color their monkeys and the blanket and glue the monkeys onto the blanket.

Monkey Mask

  • Monkey mask pattern
  • Tag board
  • Elastic string or ribbon
  • Crayons or markers
  • Hole punch
  • Craft Sticks (optional)

Pre-cut a monkey mask for each child. Let the children color them. Measure a length of elastic string or ribbon to fit the child. Punch a hole on each side of the mask and attach the elastic string or ribbon to the mask. If you use elastic string, attach one piece and slip it over the children’s heads. If you use ribbon, attach two pieces and tie the mask around their heads.

As an alternative, glue or tape a craft stick to the masks and let the children hold them in front of their faces rather than wear them.


Display these videos for home use or show short segments if you have public performance rights.

  • Curious George Rides a Bike. (10.5 minutes)
  • Stories from Near and Far. (31 minutes) Show the segment, "I, Crocodile" by Fred Marcellino.


Texas Reading Club 2005 Programming Manual / Go Wild...Read!

Published by the Library Development Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission

Page last modified: June 14, 2011