Sailing in Sun and Storm

Books to Share

  • Bear in Sunshine by Stella Blackstone.
  • Clifford and the Big Storm by Norman Bridwell.
  • It Looked Like Spilt Milk by Charles G. Shaw.
  • Splosh! by Mick Inkpen.
  • What Color Was the Sky Today? by Meila Ford.

Books to Show or Booktalk

  • The Cloud Book by Tomie De Paola.
  • Flash, Crash, Rumble and Roll by Franklyn M. Branley.
  • Listen to the Rain by Bill Martin.
  • Rain by Manya Stojic.
  • Yellow Umbrella by Jae-Soo Liu.

Bulletin Board

In Rain or Shine...Read!

Create a scene with a child or animal walking in the rain while reading a book about weather. Dress the child or animal in a colorful raincoat, with boots and an umbrella. The sky has clouds, raindrops, sun peeking out, and a rainbow. If you need patterns, try some of those available at All About Coloring,


Whatever the Weather!

Display books, videos, DVDs, and musical recordings about rain, the sun, storms, lightning, wind, and other weather phenomena with colorful umbrellas, rain boots, suntan lotion, sun visors, sunglasses, etc. Wear a colorful raincoat and rain boots to storytime.



Use the pattern provided to create umbrella nametags.


Sunny S’mores


  • Graham crackers
  • Chocolate chips
  • Miniature marshmallows
  • Aluminum foil pie pans
  • Aluminum foil


Prepare theses ahead of time or let the children assemble their own snack. Place the graham crackers onto the aluminum pie pan. Sprinkle chocolate chips and marshmallows onto the graham crackers. Cover the plates with tin foil and place in a sunny window. Tell the children the s’mores will be ready to eat at the end of storytime after they have baked. If you do not have a sunny window or the weather is not cooperating, replace the aluminum pans and foil with paper plates and towels and heat in a microwave oven.


Itsy Bitsy Spider


The itsy bitsy spider,

Crawled up the waterspout.

Down came the rain,

And washed the spider out.

Out came the sun

And dried up all the rain.

And the itsy bitsy spider,

Went up the spout again.


The Sunny Song

(By Debbie Brightwell Brown. Sing to the tune of “London Bridge Is Falling Down.” Suit actions to words.)

The hot sun is shining down,

Shining down, shining down,

The hot sun is shining down.

Fun, fun summer!

Let’s all play in the pool,

In the pool, in the pool.

Let’s all play in the pool.

Fun, fun summer!

Summertime is so much fun,

So much fun, so much fun.

Summertime is so much fun.

Fun, fun summer!

Audio Recordings

  • “Mr. Sun” on Singable Songs for the Very Young by Raffi.
  • “Rain, Rain Go Away” on Here is Thumbkin by Kimbo Educational.
  • “Robin in the Rain” on Singable Songs for the Very Young by Raffi.

Flannel Boards

“Mother Nature’s Gift” from Teeny-Tiny Folktales by Jean Warren.

Five Little Umbrellas

(Traditional, adapted by Debbie Brightwell Brown. Use the pattern provided to cut out five umbrellas from felt, fun foam, or paper in the appropriate colors. Put all five umbrellas on the flannel board and remove them one at a time as you recite the rhyme.)

Five happy umbrellas stood by the door,

The blue one went outside, and then there were four.

Four little umbrellas, pretty as could be,

The red one went outside, and then there were three.

Three bored umbrellas with nothing to do,

The green one went outside, and then there were two.

Two sad umbrellas, not having much fun,

The yellow went outside, and then there was just one.

One little umbrella, standing alone in the hall,

He also got to go outside, yeah! And that was all.

five little umbrellas flannel board

Puppet Plays

You Are My Sunshine Musical

(Song by Jimmie Davis. Adapted as puppet show by Debbie Brightwell Brown. This short musical puppet show can be done with a puppet stage or while sitting and holding the puppets.)

Puppet and Props

  • Flower stick puppet in a flowerpot.
  • Double-sided stick puppet with a sun on one side and cloud with raindrops on the reverse.

Directions for making a stick flower in a flowerpot puppet can be found at Gingerbread Grandma’s Cauldron,

FLOWER: (sings and grows as sun puppet shines on it) You are my sunshine, my only sunshine. You make me happy when skies are gray. You’ll never know dear, how much I love you. Please don’t take my sunshine away. (flip sun puppet to raindrop side)

FLOWER: (raise flower to show that it is growing taller) Little raindrops, sweet little raindrops, you make me grow taller every day. You’ll never know dear, how much I love you. Please don’t take my raindrops away. (Flower grows. Repeat sun and rain as many times as you like.)


Easy Rainbows

Follow the directions in the Toddler Chapter to make the rainbow nametags. Instead of cutting the circle in half, let the children fold them over into a half circle rainbow shape and glue or staple together.

Sun Pasta Necklace


  • Stelle pasta (star-shaped pasta)
  • Yarn


Purchase stelle pasta, which is star-shaped and has a hole in the center. String the stelle pasta onto the yarn and tie it to create a necklace.

Games and Activities

Rain Stick Fun

Pass around a rain stick for the children to turn back and forth and listen to the rain. Rain sticks can be purchased inexpensively from many nature and toy stores.

Web Sites

Weather Wiz Kids

This site has facts and information about all things weather. Topics covered include hurricanes, tornadoes, rain, wind, flood, lightening, weather science experiments, safety tips, folklore, games, and photography.

Professional Resources

Teeny-Tiny Tales by Jean Warren.

All About Coloring

This site offers free coloring sheets and games.

Gingerbread Grandma’s Cauldron

This site provides crafts, recipes, and activities.


Texas Reading Club 2007 Programming Manual / Sail Away with Books!

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

Page last modified: June 14, 2011