How Does Sleep Come? written by Jeanne C. Blackmore and illustrated by Elizabeth Sayles is one of the sweetest bedtime stories we've read. More than any other book, I'm always on the lookout for books to read before bed to send Sam and Oliver happily into Dreamland, and with its imaginative prose and beautiful illustrations, this one doesn't disappoint.
The publisher, Sourcebooks Jabberwocky, has provided the most adorable ideas for a pajama party based on the book:
BEFORE the party starts
· Use the link (see below) to download invitations that are sure to get responses!
· If you want to create your own invitations:
o Use construction paper to cut out little pajama bottoms and write the desired information on the legs. Use colored ribbon to make a cute bow on the top to look like pajama draw strings. Put in an envelope and send.
· Dress to impress in your snazziest pajamas. (Don’t leave out your stuffed animal for comfort!)
· Make sure you have all your food and materials ready and set up for the guests. (I always have extra so that everyone smiles.)
o Food Ideas:
§ Milk and Cookies
· Cookies made in moon, star, and teddy bear shapes
§ Cupcakes with moons and stars as decoration toppings
§ Sliced Apples with Peanut Butter (but check for allergies first!)
· Decorations are easy for a Pajama theme! Push living room furniture out of the way first. Throw pillows around the living room and place plenty of blankets around for a cozy atmosphere. To add affect, create a starry sky by hanging white twinkly lights around the party area.
DURING the party
· Use the creative writing stars found in the Sourcebooks Pajama Party Kit (see below) as an icebreaker. You can ask questions such as, “What is the best bedtime snack?” or “What stuffed animal do you cuddle with at nighttime?”
· Easy obstacle course to get energy out before reading the book:
o Pretend they’re Jacob sprinting to his bed before lights out: jump the pillow, crawl under the chair, go around the footstool and end up in the living room (or party area) for the reading. Have a crepe paper “finish” and “start” lines taped to the floor.
· As you read HOW DOES SLEEP COME have the kids count sailboats and guess what animal will appear next. Then, ask them how do they think sleep comes?
SLEEPY TIME FOOD
This would be the perfect time to bring out snacks! (see above)
· Like the rabbit in HOW DOES SLEEP COME, race and hop around. To add effect: makes a blanket of cotton balls on the floor so that it feels like clouds and snow.
· Pajama Contest with winners and prizes for most comfy, most sleepy time props, brightest PJs, and more. Prizes could be a small plush toy or candy.
· If it’s a sleepover, have a sleeping bag relay race (similar to potato sac race)
· Decorate pillowcases to make your very own Dream Canvas to sleep on!
o Buy blank pillow cases and assorted permanent markers (safe to sleep on) and draw away!
o You can also use the pillow case as a cape to look like Jacob on the cover.
Use the downloadable Sourcebooks Pajama Party Kit for activities that will allow the kids to interact with Jacob’s bedtime in How DOES SLEEP COME?
· Slip one of the cookies they might have enjoyed during the party into a cellophane CD envelope, tie with colored yarn, and add a nice Thank You note or tag. On the less expensive side, simply use sandwich baggies or saran wrap!
o The Thank You note can be made with colored construction paper cut out in moons or stars, punch a whole, and attach to yarn!
· Packets of hot cocoa mix, so when they go home and get ready for bed, they can feel all snuggly and warm.
o To jazz up the packets, add a Thank You note using the ideas listed above.
· Make your own bookmarks with dreamlike pictures like the ones you find in the book
· Purchase glow-in-the-dark stars and put a few in 5.5 " L x 1.5 " W envelopes. You can write Thank You on the front and draw on moons and stars.
Have fun planning your Pajama Party to celebrate HOW DOES SLEEP COME?
ISBN-13: 978-1402271052; Juvenile Fiction/Picture Book
Disclaimer: Sourcebooks provided an advance copy of this book for my review at no cost.