Story Time Starter — Big & Little

One of the best early concept subjects to read about with a child is opposites. Loud or quiet, hard or soft, black or white, opposites present comparisons that can be pointed out and used every day. When considering size, Big & Little is a must!


Whether it’s the fun The Little Little Girl With the Big Big Voice or the vocabulary-building Big, Bigger, Biggest, children love this subject. Even Big Hugs, Little Hugs teaches size difference through illustrations. If growing up is more of the direction you want to go with the big and little theme, Big Little Monkey gives a great example of a youngster wanting to grow up. As children do grow older, Dream Big, Little Pig and The Three Little Aliens and the Big, Bad Robot are great stories to expand the definition of big and little. For even more big and little books, check out our list:

Big & Little Book List (Word document/ .doc file)

Here are some really fun rhymes to go with your stories!

Show Me Something Big
Show me something BIG,
Show me something small.
Spin in a circle but try not to fall.
Clap your hands, stomp your feet.
Shake your arms, then take a seat.

Big & Small
I can make myself real big,     (stand up on toes)
By standing up straight and tall.
But when I’m tired of being big,
I can make myself get small.   (stoop down)

Sometimes I’m tall.                 (stretch arms overhead)
Sometimes I’m small.             (squat down)
Look and you will see             (circle eyes with fingers)
The best size is ME!               (point to self)

And of course, everyone loves “I’m a Little Teapot.” If you are looking for a song to sing along with, try Preschool Action Time. This CD also includes “Tiny Tim”, “This Little Monkey”, “Ten Little Pumpkins”, and the ever-popular story time song “Open, Shut Them.”

Here are a few more songs to try:

  • So Big (Songs: Five Little Monkeys, So Big, Baby Chickie, Growing, Big Things Come From Little Things You Do)
  • Five Little Monkeys (Songs: Five Little Monkeys, Five Little Frogs, It’s a Small World)
  • Nursery Rhyme Time (Songs: Little Bird, Eensy Weensy Spider, This Little Piggy, and more)

And don’t forget a craft to go along with stories and music! Find pictures from magazines, clip art, or coloring books of big things–buildings, cars, the Earth, cows–and little things–bugs, frogs, peas, babies–and help your child glue them onto a piece of construction paper, little on one side and big on the other. For an even easier craft, cut big and little shapes out of construction paper and glue them onto a sheet of white paper. Both crafts make a really easy visual to demonstrate the differences in size.

Lastly, if you want to expand the opposites theme, check out this web page for a really helpful opposites project!

For more on story time and early literacy, visit our Early Literacy page!

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