RovingFiddlehead KidLit

Flannelboards for Botswana

August 13, 2013

Botswana map

Hello Flannel Friday friends,

Does anyone have an interest in sending a bit of Flannel Friday to Botswana? I will be travelling to Botswana for my Wild Blue Fig work in October. While there I will visit some libraries and schools as well as artisans. I have run the idea of distributing storytime kits including flannelboards, picture books and storytime starter sheets past a few educators in Botswana and they would love to receive some these. With your help, I would be able distribute more.

If you are interested in helping, you can help by

a) making a flannelboard (or other storytime props that pack flat)

b) making a storytime starter (you can send it as a PDF and I will take care of laminating and printing). Updated: A storytime starter pulls together the transition elements of storytime such as fingerplays, songs and literacy tips. They are a handy for preparing storytimes as well as a great resource for parents to use at home. Check out the All About Me one Karen made for ICPL Book Babies if you’d like to see an example.

c) sharing this post with your librarian and teacher colleagues and friends

Simple interactive flannels and props that teach concepts and can be used in multiple ways would be ideal as the schools are working on getting away from strictly lecture-style classes. Examples include¬†the ever-popular Little Mouse, Storytime Katie’s Farm Pack, and the Count and Clip Cards Falling Flannelboards shared last week. If you are interested in adapting flannels to the animals children see everyday, Jan Brett’s Name the Botswana Animal game is a great resource. There is nothing wrong with creating snow-themed flannels either though – part of the wonder of storytelling is how it expands vocabulary and experiences beyond what we can encounter on a daily basis.

While many details of the trip are still being worked out, I know that children in in Francistown, Serinane and Ditshegwane will definitely be receiving flannelboards. I will definitely update you all if other communities are added.

If you wish to send a flannelboard, storytime starter or picture book, please email me at andflemming [AT] gmail [DOT] com for a mailing address. Please send items to me no later than September 20 to guarantee I receive them in time.

Thank you so much for considering this request to share our early literacy goals! Please don’t hesitate to ask if you have any questions.



8 thoughts on “Flannelboards for Botswana

  1. Amy says:

    Andrea- I’m so in. Can you post some more specific details about size/weight requirements (if any), and what you want a storytime starter sheet to include?

    • rovingfiddlehead says:

      Thanks, Amy! No size/weight requirements other than wanting the items to be able to pack flat. I didn’t get too specific about the storytime starter sheet since I know there’s a lot of variety in how different librarians make them and if anyone has pre-existing ones they are happy to share that’s awesome. If you are making one from scratch, some ideas include rhymes, songs, and early literacy tips that tie in to your flannelboard. Templates that could be used to create more flannel pieces and/or crafts could be a good addition as well. Thanks again!

      • Amy says:

        Great, thanks! I just wanted to check about the weight/size because I know we’ve run into trouble with that with bringing things from my church to Tanzania. And I wanted to be sure to send you a starter sheet that would be useful.

  2. Julie says:

    what is a storytime starter? Ariana loves to draw and make stories…you mention making a pdf and laminating, so I assume it is drawings without words?

    • rovingfiddlehead says:

      It’s a library term for a sheet providing ideas for the transition elements such as fingerplays, songs and literacy tips that are used between books in storytime. You can see several Karen G has made for ICPL on the Early Literacy page.

  3. ~ K ~ says:


    I am definitely interested in sharing at least one storytime item ~ maybe several ~ and a book or two. I’ll go through my extras and see what I have to share.

    Thank you for providing this opportunity for us to share our passion for early literacy with others. I am excited to be a part of your adventure. :o)

    I hope you have a wonderful trip!
    ~ K ~

  4. Pingback: Flannel Friday: Creepy Carrots Flannelboard and Template | RovingFiddlehead KidLit

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