Ants and Artists, an Art Storytime


Ma Jiang and the Orange Ants by Barbara Ann Port
The Ants Go Marching by Sandra D’Antonio

Continuing our CSLP theme “Dig into Reading” this week we talked about ANTS. We began with the Chinese tale Ma Jiang and the Orange Ants. This was a great story to talk about cultures other than our own and since fire ants are a big deal to kids in the south, they easily connected to the fierce orange ants in the story. This story was incredibly long for a storytime group and so required some abridgement, but the overall story was accessible to the children and they enjoyed Ma Jiang’s ingenuity.

Our second story was The Ants go Marching. I will admit that we did not read/sing the entire 1-10. I ended at 5 when “the little one stopped to wave good-bye”. The children did enjoy the marching along with the ants.


This week we played with my “matching flowers game” flannel. The set consists of some flowers and flower pieces. The child’s goal is to match the appropriate flower top with the stem that has the correct number of petals. As with any other matching game, the children had a blast finding the correct flower top and matching with the appropriate flower bottom. Find out more in my Flannel Friday post!

Action Rhyme:

My extension activity this week was a very simple fingerplay. As always, the incredibly simple fingerplay was a big hit with the young ones and older ones.

Ant Hill

I once saw an ant hill,(make fist with one hand)
With no ants about
So I said, “Dear little ants,
won’t you please come out?”
Then as if the little ants had heard my call,
One, two, three, four, five came out.(extend fingers, one at a time)
And that was all.

Art Station:

This week our art word was ARTIST. We talked about how everyone is an artist because everyone has the ability to put paint down on paper (or in some other way make a mark). Our featured art set up this week was a little bit of a twist on finger painting. Initially I had planned on finger painting, but when I was setting up for my class I realized I didn’t have any of my preferred paper for the project. So instead, I gave the children foam rollers and encouraged them to paint on their hands and then make handprints on their papers. It was a project that was enjoyed by all… and hardly any paint was left on my library, so I was pleasantly surprised as well.

Featured art station set up:

  • Shallow paint trays
  • Tempera paint
  • Paper
  • Small foam rollers
  • Paint brushes and crayons for embellishment

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