For the sitters, I used large, soft, magnetic letters to introduce "B-A-B-Y" and felt shapes to do the feltboard house. They were captivated by how I used my voice and moved the letters and pieces. For example, during the feltboard house, I modified the rhyme a bit to repeat the names of the shapes and allow me to let each child have an up close view of the shape: "Start with a square, a square, a square, a square, a square, a square right there!"
For the older babes, I had a soft, toy fire truck with the word "fire truck" stitched into the side. I went around to each child and pointed to the word. While reading My Car, I also went around the half circle, pointing to the word "gas" written in the illustrations.