Monday, March 6, 2017


When I decided to do a Rapunzel storytime, I went back and forth over which STEAM project to do with it. Rapunzel provides a lot of options. I saw suggestions for zip lines, pulleys, or marble runs. In the end I went with catapults. The idea behind it was that we were catapulting supplies up to Rapunzel to aid in her escape. 


Opening Song: Put your hands up high

Opening Rhyme: Hands Go Up

Story: "Rapunzel: A German Fairy Tale" in Rapunzel Stories Around the World by Cari Meister

Song: Fairy Tale Song
Tune: Jingle Bells

Once upon a time
In a land so far away
A princess kissed a frog,
Well that just made his day

Far across the town
Red Riding Hood took fright
She found a wolf in Granny's bed
When she told her good night!

Fairy Tales! Fairy tales!
Read them every day!
Oh what fun it is to hear
How Goldilocks got away!

Fairy Tales! Fairy Tales!
Full of joy and laughter
Do you know how this one ends?
Why it's happily ever after!

Source: First Grade W.O.W.

Song: Rapunzel's Hair is Falling Down
Tune: London Bridge is Falling Down

Rapunzel's hair is falling down
Falling down, falling down,
Rapunzel's hair is falling down
My fair lady

Madame Gothel locked her up,
Locked her up, locked her up,
Madame Gothel locked her up
My fair lady

Rapunzel will escape the tower,
Escape the tower, escape the tower,
Rapunzel will escape the tower
Happ'ly ever after!

Source: Me

Story: Falling for Rapunzel by Leah Wilcox

Motion Activity: Action Dice with Rapunzel Song from YouTube

Final Story: How the Library (Not the Prince) Saved Rapunzel by Wendy Meddour

Activity: Catapults

Goodbye song

How it actually went: 

I structured this one a little differently because I knew the kids were going to have so much shooting their catapults that they wouldn't want to come back together for our final story. So this week, we finished all of our stories and songs before beginning our project. 

Falling for Rapunzel was a huge hit that had the children laughing hysterically. When it came time to play music with our action dice, I could not find the Rapunzel song that I had previously found on YouTube, so I wound up using a cd that I keep on hand for storytimes. 

For the catapults I modified the design I learned from the Heathers at STEM in Libraries. I had the pleasure of hearing them speak at the ILA conference in 2015, so I still had the catapult project from their presentation. Instead of using a plastic spoon, I hot-glued plastic bottle tops to popsicle sticks. I had a bunch of the tops on hand and I had seen it done this way. As it turns out, I should have stuck with the plastic spoons. The hot glue kept coming loose and the tops would fall off. Ah well, live and learn. At least I had plenty of replacements available. 

I made some targets for the kids to shoot at. Since the idea was that we were catapulting supplies up to Rapunzel, I made a tower out of an old cardboard tube. I also made a smaller one out of a cardboard box. Then, just for the heck of it, I set several small buckets out for the kids to aim for also. The kids had absolutely no trouble spending a half hour building and shooting their catapults. 

Have you built catapults with your kids before? Which design did you use? 

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