Celebrations Programs Chapter

It’s a Wild and Wacky World!

Alternative Titles for Program

  • Going Loony at the Library
  • It’s a Wild, Wild, Wild, Wild World
  • Wild and Wacky Hullabaloo
  • Wild Wacky World of Books

Books to Share

  • Bubba the Cowboy Prince: A Fractured Texas Tale by Helen Ketteman.
  • Pete’s a Pizza by William Steig.
  • A Porcupine Named Fluffy by Helen Lester.
  • Soap! Soap! Don’t Forget the Soap! by Tom Birdseye.

Books to Show and Booktalk

  • Bunnicula: A Rabbit Tale of Mystery by Deborah and James Howe.
  • The Good, the Bad, and the Goofy by Jon Scieszka.
  • Jackalope by Janet Stevens and Susan Stevens Crummel.
  • Knights of the Kitchen Table by Jon Scieszka.
  • Once Upon a Marigold by Jean Ferris.
  • Summer Reading is Killing Me! by Jon Scieszka.

Bulletin Board

The Wild Wacky World of Riddles

Cut out letters of various font styles and sizes from pages in old magazines and newspapers to create the title, “The Wild Wacky World of Riddles.” Fold sheets of brightly colored paper in half horizontally. Write a riddle on the front and the answer on the inside. Post the riddles on the bulletin board so that the riddle shows, but the answer can only be seen when a child lifts the flap. Variation: Have the children write and illustrate their own riddles to post on the bulletin board. Incorporate this activity as a part of a kick-off celebration or let the children add their riddles throughout the summer. Instead of riddles, you could also use tongue twisters or jokes.


Use the patterns provided here to cut out silly heads for nametags.


Tickle Your Funny Bone

Display humorous books with either a two-dimensional or three-dimensional skeleton holding a sign saying “Books to Tickle Your Funny Bone.” Look for a skeleton graphic on-line, such as the one at Dorling Kindersley’s Web site at http://uk.dk.com/static/cs/uk/11/clipart/humanbody/image_body001.html. Or, purchase a cardboard hanging skeleton Halloween decoration.


Create smiley faces of varying sizes from brightly colored paper and post them all over the library. A pattern is included here. You may even want to put them in the bathrooms, on the ceiling, and other surprising places. For added fun, use the decorations to create a game by posting a specific number of smiley faces throughout the children’s area. Prepare a simple form for the children to fill out, indicating the number of smiley faces they counted and their name and phone number. At the end of the summer put all the correct answers in a drawing for a wacky prize.


Serve Gummy Worm Cup Cakes. Make chocolate cupcakes and frost them with chocolate icing. Cover the icing with crushed Oreo cookies. Cut gummy worms in half and use a little icing to attach the end to the cupcake so the worms stick up. Gummy worms are available in many candy stores and grocery stores or from on-line vendors. Caution: Some children have chocolate allergies; for them, use another flavor and add green food coloring to create “grassy” areas for the worms.


“Backward Town” in The Llama Who Had No Pajama: 100 Favorite Poems by Mary Ann Hoberman.


Boom, Boom Ain’t It Great to Be Crazy

(Traditional. Music and lyrics for this traditional camp song are available on the NIEHS Kid’s Page at www.niehs.nih.gov/kids/lyrics/boomboom.htm and on the recording, Disney Silly Songs: 20 Simply Super Singable Silly Songs.)


Boom, boom ain’t it great to be crazy!

Boom, boom ain’t it great to be nuts like me?

Silly and foolish the whole day through.

Boom, boom ain’t it great to be crazy?

Way down south where bananas grow,

A grasshopper stepped on an elephant’s toe.

The elephant cried with tears in his eyes,

“Pick on somebody your own size!”


Horsy and flea and three blind mice

Sitting in the barnyard shooting dice

Horsy slipped and fell on the flea.

“Oops!” said the flea, “There’s a horsy on me!”


Bought me a pair of combination underwear

Guaranteed not to rip or tear

Wore ‘em three months without hesitation.

Couldn’t get ‘em off because I lost the combination.

Do Your Ears Hang Low

(Traditional. This simple tune can be heard on the Music Legacy Web site at www.musiclegacy.com/doyour.htm and is available on many recordings, including Favorite Songs for Kids. Turn this into a movement activity by performing the actions indicated in the song.)

Do your ears hang low,

Do they wobble to and fro?

Can you tie them in a knot,

Can you tie them in a bow?

Can you throw them over your shoulder

Like a continental soldier?

Do your ears hang low?

Do they wave up in the sky?

Do they crinkle when they’re wet,

Do they straighten when they’re dry?

Can you wave them at your neighbor

With a minimum of labor?

Do your ears hang high?

The Princess Pat

(This is a call and response song with actions. The children repeat what the leader sings and mimic the actions. The tune is the same as “Drinking Cider Through a Straw.” You may listen to the melody on the Sing Along With Me: A Collection of Traditional Guide, Scout, and Campfire Songs at http://songs-with-music.freeservers.com/PrincessPat.html.)

The Princess Pat (Strike an Egyptian pose with your hands)

Lived in a tree. (Hands over head in tree form)

She sailed across (Wave arms in an ocean motion)

The Seven Seas. (Hold up seven fingers)

She sailed across (Wave arms in an ocean motion)

The Channel Too, (Hold up two fingers)

And took with her (Throw an imaginary bag over shoulder)

A Rigabamboo. (Hold up your hands and do the twist)

A Rigabamboo (Hold up your hands and do the twist)

Now what is that? (Place your left hand out on “what” and your right hand on “that”)

It’s something made (Mime sewing)

By Princess Pat. (Strike an Egyptian pose with your hands)

It’s red and gold, (Place your right hand out on “red” and your left hand out on “gold”)

And purple, too. (Place your hands to your chest, then on your hips)

That’s why it’s called (Hands to mouth)

A Rigabamboo. (Hold up your hands and do the twist)

Now Captain Jack (Salute)

Had a mighty fine crew. (Place your arms behind your back and sway)

They sailed across (Arms wave)

The Channel Too. (Hold up two fingers)

His ship did sink (Hold nose and pretend you are going down)

And yours will too, (Point fingers at kids)

If you don’t take (Throw imaginary bag over shoulders)

A Rigabamboo. (Hold up your hands and do the twist)

A Rigabamboo (Hold up your hands and do the twist)

Now what is that? (Place your left hand out on “what” and your right hand on “that”)

It’s something made (Mime sewing)

By Princess Pat. (Strike an Egyptian pose with your hands)

It’s red and gold (Place your right hand out on “red” and your left hand out on “gold”)

And purple, too. (Place your hands to your chest, then on your hips)

That’s why it’s called (Hands to mouth)

A Rigabamboo. (Hold up your hands and do the twist)

Dance and Movement Songs

The Chicken Dance

This popular Texas dance is fun for everyone. Add a chicken hat and things will really get going. A version by Brave Combo is available on their recording, The Hokey Pokey.

Hokey Pokey

Everyone can do the Hokey Pokey! There are many different versions of this song. One version is on Kids Fun: Games, Songs and Sing-a-longs by various artists. This dance is so well known you can probably do it without a recording.

Shake Your Sillies Out

Sing “Shake My Sillies Out” on More Singable Songs by Raffi. Have the children stand and do the actions of this song. Continue singing the song by making up new verses.

Riddles and Jokes

Q. What do French frogs eat?
A. French flies!

Q. What would you call a frog that’s stuck in the mud?
A. Unhoppy!

Q. What goes “Moo-a-choo! Moo-a-choo?”
A. A cow with a cold!

Q. What do cows read at the breakfast table?
A. The Moos-paper!

Q. What’s black and white and read all over?
A. A zebra reading a book.


Lazy Jack

Tell the story of “Lazy Jack.” There are many versions of this easy-to-tell silly Old English folktale, including the picture book Lazy Jack by Vivian French.

The Three Sillies

Another well-known folktale that is fun and simple to tell is “The Three Sillies.” One version can be found in the picture book, The Three Sillies by Steven Kellogg.


Funny Flip Book

  • Three-clasp style report folders
  • Typing paper

Fill a three-clasp style report folder, available at office supply stores, with seven to ten sheets of white typing paper. Precut the sheets in thirds horizontally, stopping about an inch from the inside binding. Have the children take turns drawing body parts on the sheets of paper. The top third of the page is for the head. The middle third is the body and the bottom third is for the legs. Flip the pages to create a variety of funny creatures. Variation: Make individual booklets by stapling paper together. You may want to ask a volunteer to precut the pages for the children.

Silly Hats

  • Construction paper
  • Feathers and other collage materials
  • Glue
  • Tape
  • Staplers

Children (and adults) will create original, ornate, wild, and wacky hats. Supply children with strips of various colored construction paper, strips of tissue paper, feathers, other collage materials, and glue, tape, and staplers. Measure a strip of paper to go around each child’s head to create a hat base. Tape or staple the strip to the proper size. Be careful that the staple points won’t scratch the child’s head. Begin attaching additional strips of paper in arches over the top. Younger children may need help with this. Add feathers, tissue paper, and all kinds of things to create a very funny hat.

Silly Noses

  • Paper towel tubes, or small styrofoam cups, or white paper
  • Yarn
  • Tape or stapler
  • Collage materials (cotton balls, feathers, moving eyes, buttons, glitter)

Children decorate cups or paper towel tubes with markers and then glue collage materials onto them. If using paper towel tubes, cut them into segments of about two inches in advance. Staple or tape yarn onto the sides and place them over the children’s noses. Tie the yarn around the child’s head. Have a mirror available so children can see themselves. Variation 2: Have children design and draw crazy noses on white paper. Cut out the design and use double-stick tape to attach the funny nose to the child’s nose.

Tickle Sticks

  • Feathers
  • Craft sticks
  • Glue sticks

Have the children glue a feather to the end of a wooden craft stick. The children can use the stick to tickle their friends with the feather. Teen volunteers might also create the tickle sticks ahead of time for use as a keepsake.

Wacky Animals

  • Animal pictures from magazines
  • Paper
  • Scissors
  • Glue sticks

Cut out pictures of animals from old magazines. After they have been trimmed, cut the animals in half. Children create wacky animals by mixing and matching tops and bottoms of different animals and gluing them onto construction paper. The children can then name their new animals.

Games and Activities

Happy Face Hunt

Photocopy happy faces on yellow paper and cut them out. Hide them in the program area or room where the hunt will take place. If you have already decorated the area with smiley faces, make sure the ones you want the children to hunt are a different color. Ask the children to find and gather the happy faces. A prize can be given for the child who finds the most or the entire group can work to find all of them. A pattern for happy faces is provided at the end of this chapter.

Silly Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich

Make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich by following the audiences’ directions. You will need: a loaf of bread, a butter knife, and peanut butter and jelly. Begin by telling the children that you want to make a peanut butter and jelly sandwich but you don’t know how. Ask them to tell you how to make it and then do EXACTLY as they say. For example, one child may say, “Put it on top.” and you would put the peanut butter on your head. Be prepared for a mess. This activity will have kids rolling on the floor because the presenter often ends up with peanut butter on the nose!

Wacky Wear

Encourage the children to come wearing wild and wacky outfits. These can be mismatched clothes, clothes worn backward or inside out, or clothes worn on the wrong body parts. For example, they may wear socks on their hands. The crazier the clothes, the better! Give a prize to the person with the wackiest costume. Let the children decorate an old hat. Attach crazy things like old toys, crayons, and beads.

Guest Speakers

Invite a clown to entertain the children, present a workshop to older children on painting clown faces, or teach a juggling class. Invite a local Scout Troop, camp counselor, or school age children from a childcare center to sing silly songs and present funny skits.


If you have public performance rights, show these videos and DVDs to the children. Otherwise, display them for home use.

  • Bark, George. (7 minutes)
  • Christopher, Please Clean Up Your Room. (7 minutes)
  • Dem Bones. (10 minutes)
  • The Hungry Squid. (14 minutes)
  • There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly. (7 minutes)

Web Sites

Crazy Libs

Children can create crazy original stories or they can alter classic stories with hilarious outcomes.

Just Riddles and More

Plenty of riddles and games to keep kids laughing!

Wacky Web Tales

Children can read or create funny stories and madlibs.

Professional Resources


This site includes many children’s songs to tickle the funnybone.

Sing Along With Me: A Collection of Traditional Guide, Scout, and Campfire Songs

An alphabetical collection of lyrics with midi files.


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