Hippo, NO! RHINO Storytime

For this storytime, I chose to read stories about my favorite animal. I was surprised by how many books are actually available about rhinos, or with rhinos as characters. I often feel like my best storytimes are when I am doing something I’m excited about, and I have an unlimited amount of enthusiasm over rhinoceroses.

The first book we read was My Rhinoceros by Jon Agee. This is the book that comes immediately to mind when trying to think of rhino books. The kids loved the surprising ending.


Next we did the short but sweet action rhyme “The Rhinoceros,” that I found from Jen in the Library. The kiddos had a lot of fun stomping their feet during this one, so we ran through it about 3 times!

The rhinoceros moves like this and that

He’s terribly wide and he’s terribly fat

The ground under his feet gets worn

but goodness gracious look at that horn!

I’m In Charge! by Jeanne Willis was our next book. I had this one on hold and it finally came in the day of storytime. I’m so glad it did, cause it has everything I was looking for; a unique story, a great rhyme, a lesson, and absolutely beautiful illustrations. The kids were all smart enough to declare that they would never try to be in charge over their parents like the little rhino in the book.


I brought out the rhythm sticks to get everyone up and moving around. We used them to tap along to “The Rhinoceros Tap” by Sandra Boynton. It started out a lot of fun, but I think the song got a little long, so the kids got a bit bored with tapping.

The final book of storytime was Hippo! No, Rhino by Jeff Newman. This book is practically wordless, so I was a bit nervous about how it would be recieved. But, it turned out to be the best of the three we read! The kids did an excellent job talking about what was happening based on the pictures, and found the premise quite hysterical.


For this week’s craft project I went very simple. I printed out masks that the kids could color, cut out, and then wear. They had the choice of becoming either a hippo or a rhino. It was very easy prep, and we had a bunch of hippos and rhinos running around the children’s room after storytime.

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