For the past week or so we have been listening to a great book on tape called The Scarecrow's Hat by Ken Brown. I bought this book and tape set through a Scholastic book order several years ago. It's fun to have a story on tape as opposed to me reading aloud because the voices are different. Of course I will still often read aloud to the children, but a taped story is just a nice change once in a while. I have added a link to the book to my Amazon sidebar if you'd like to check it out. In the story a chicken wants the scarecrow's straw hat; however, the scarecrow really wants to swap the hat for a walking stick to rest his weary arms. Since chicken doesn't have a walking stick, she goes to Badger who is willing to swap his stick for a ribbon, etc, etc. After a series of swaps, every animal character is happy. End of story.
Since I like to have props to go with our story, I printed out some pictures using Microsoft clipart and pulled together the items in the story.
The first photo shows the tray and basket which I pulled together to hold all the props and pictures. The second photo shows the pictures of the animal characters along with the item they have to "swap" in the story.
To use the props, I choose 7 children to be the characters in the story and give each one a picture and prop. Then I play the tape and hold the book. When it comes to each child's "part" in the story they hold up their picture and prop. At the end, the "chicken" helps coordinate swapping all the items.
The children have really enjoyed this activity. It's a great story. Fictional, yes. But also fun and a great book for the season of autumn. If you are interested in downloading the pictures, click on the file shown below.