Eric Kimmel has been a storyteller for more than thirty years. He grew up in a neighborhood in New York City, where he had neighbors from all over the world. On one street, you could hear languages from five countries being spoken. His grandmother came from Russia and spoke five languages herself—she would tell him many stories from her homeland. Eric Kimmel always loved reading—he especially loved Dr. Seuss and fairy tales, and read his copy of the Grimm Brother Fairy Tales until it fell apart. He was a teacher for many years and told his stories at schools, parks and libraries until he was able to start writing stories full time. He books are mostly about traditional stories from all over the world. He has written over 100 books.
Here’s what we did for story time:
“I Took My Frog to the Library”
This is an original story based in the United States
Activity: Ask the kids what animal they would take to the library and talk about those animals might do. A dog might chew book”s, a monkey climb on the shelves, etc.
“Greatest of All”
This is a story of mice in Japan. I used pictures we had on hand to tell this story but flannel board This is an easy story to learn to tell.
“Little Red Hot”
A cowboy version of Little Red Riding Hood.
Activity: Have the kids gallop around and comeback and pretend to eat a piece of pepper pie. After everyone pretend to drink some cool water to cool their mouths down. Be sure to add sound effects when you do this with the kids.
“Anansi and the Moss Covered Rock”
An African folktale, I used stuffed animals and puppets to tell this story. I also brought in a moss covered rock that I made. I just took a good sized rock and covered it with moss I bought at my local craft store.
A European folktale about a husband thinking his wife’s work was much easier. I love the message of this book.
Activity: Have the kids act out different work that they did in the book. Churn butter, milk the cow, chop wood, rock the baby, wash and hang the clothes.
“Little Britches and the Rattlers”
This is a retelling of Little Black Sambo, western style. It makes you wonder if snakes could really do this.
Most story times will not have time for all of these books, they are just some of my favorites of Eric Kimmel so my list went a little long. Have fun choosing your favorites.