The storytimes at my library this Spring are based on different illustrators. The books feature their artwork and most of our crafts focus on experimenting with their techniques. For a few, we're creating thematically appropriate projects. I've got to say, there have been some great weeks and some duds. It's been an interesting exercise to find illustrators who have remarkable or recognizable art styles that translates into a good craft project and has a number of titles to choose from, with 3-4 of those titles working for a preschool storytime. We handout storytime sheets every week that include the stories we read and some fingerplays to do at home, for this session, we're also including biographies on the back.
A couple of our goals with this storytime series are to draw attention to various artists, highlight and discuss their artwork, and broaden the awareness of the children and parents who attend our storytimes. I don't know if these goals are really being accomplished though. Do the kids really get anything more out these storytimes than any others? Are the parents paying attention to what we're doing? Are they checking out books by these illustrators as a result of the storytimes? Are they discussing the artwork when they read books to their children? Do you have any experience running a storytime series like this? Who are your favorite illustrators? Do you feel like your patrons are grasping what you wanted them to?