As it turns out, my children love felt stories just as much as I did.
A few years ago I purchased a set of Bible felts along with a couple of sets to go along with favorite children's books, and whenever I pull them out, everyone gets excited.
Recently I made my very first set to go along with a favorite story of ours, Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? I'm not crafty or artistic, so I kept this first set very simple. I really am not sure how long it took me to complete these because I worked on them here and there in the evenings while watching television. Even though they're not fancy, the girls were thrilled when I pulled them out for the first time during our Letter B week. I let them each take turns placing figures on the board as I told the story, and they absolutely loved it!
I used these free patterns from Making Learning Fun to make Brown Bear.
Now that I've made my first set, I'm fired up to make more. I've found several websites that offer free felt story patterns...
Making Learning Fun has lots of cute felt board patterns - and the stories/rhymes that you can print out to go with them.
DLTK's felt board templates - You'll find shapes and story figures - including ones for The Very Hungry Caterpillar, which I hope to make soon.
This DLTK page has a wonderful variety of simple outlines of different shapes and figures that would work nicely as patterns.
A Child's Place Felt Board Sets - This site includes the text for the songs, rhymes, and stories, and photographs showing what each of the finished felt sets look like.
Daycare Resource Connection
Pearson Learning - a few more cute patterns here for songs like Old MacDonald, B-I-N-G-O, and others.
Some good directions for making a felt board at BillyBear4Kids. I've also seen people use a cookie sheet. Cover one side with felt, leave the other side as is and use for magnetic letter/number play!
Felt Board Play - directions for making a felt board and a set of felts to encourage creative play
Travel Felt Board Tutorial - I think I'm going to have to make this. What a fun activity for road trips or for waiting at the doctor's office.
Tips for making felt board pieces as well as a few more story patterns.
You can also do things the old-fashioned way and use pictures from coloring books as patterns.
If you don't have the time or inclination to make your figures from felt, then here's a quick and easy way to put together a flannelgraph board story:
1. Print out the story figures you want to use onto cardstock. (Here are some example figures for The Very Hungry Caterpillar. Scroll down to the bottom of the page. I like to print out the color version, but you could use the black & white ones and color them yourself before laminating.)
2. Laminate the story pieces and cut out.
3. Glue a fairly large piece of felt onto the back of each figure, and you're ready to tell your story!
*I like to store my felt sets in gallon ziploc bags along with a copy of the story. You can punch each bag with a 3-ring hole punch and store in a binder.
Do your children enjoy feltboard stories?
Please leave a comment if you have any other tips about making felt figures.
I'd love to hear your ideas!