Category Archives: Creative Expression

What If…

What If…”

Samantha Berger’s rhyming picture book, What If…, celebrates creative expression. A determined girl uses paper and a pencil to create her stories. But happens when her pencil is gone. She’ll shape the leaves. What if the leaves are blown away? She’ll sculpt in snow. What if the snow melts? She’ll use sunlight and shadows. What if everything is taken away?

This story promotes creative components of imagination, persistence, resourceful, and valuing creativity.

WHY I LIKE THIS BOOK: I like this book for three reasons. First, when the main character is faced with obstacles, she chooses to use her imagination and resources around her to find ways to express her creativity. She does not let anything stop her. Secondly, I appreciate the last page of this book which states: “As long as I live, I will always create,” a personal mantra that I try to live by daily. Thirdly, my favorite question is what if because it promotes wonder. What if the world was square? What if I lived in another country? And so I ask you, What if?

TITLE: What If…

AUTHOR: Samantha Berger

ILLUSTRATOR: Mike Curato

PUBLISHER: Little, Brown and Company, 2018

AGE GROUP: 4-7

THEME(S)/TOPICS: overcoming obstacles, problem solving

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: imagination, persistence, resourceful, valuing one’s creativity

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Pick one of your favorite things to do. List the items you need in order to do your favorite thing. What would you do if those things were no longer available? How would you do your favorite thing?

2) In what ways are you creative? What would you do if you could no longer express your creativity in the way you always have?

3) Create list of “what if” questions. Share with your friends and see how their answers differ from each other. Teachers can use these what if lists for daily writing prompts.

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author Samantha Berger, visit:

http://www.samanthaberger.com/about.html

To learn more about illustrator Mike Curato, visit:

https://www.mikecurato.com/about

Magritte’s Marvelous Hat

“Magritte’s Marvelous Hat”

When Magritte tries on a hat, it floats above his head. He buys the hat and discovers that his painting becomes better than ever.

   

The hat likes to play hide and seek which inspires Magritte to paint ordinary things in an unordinary way. One day the hat hides so well that Magritte cannot find it. Will he still be able to paint?

This book promotes imagination, wonder, different perspectives, and creativity.

TITLE: Magritte’s Marvelous Hat

AUTHOR: D. B. Johnson

ILLUSTRATOR: D. B. Johnson

PUBLISHER: Houghton Mifflin Books for Young Children, 2012

AGE GROUP: 5-7

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: imagination, wonder, different perspectives, creativity

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Create a new way to play hide and seek by changing the rules, seeking something unusual or using a different setting to play.

2) Surrealism artist Rene Magritte used juxtaposition of imagery in his paintings. Juxtaposition is placing together two contrasting/opposing objects to showcase their differences while forcing a connection(s) between the two. What is a connection that you make in Magritte’s painting titled Golconde?

Your turn: Create a picture that uses two objects that are not associated with each other to form an unlikely connection.

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author/illustrator D. B. Johnson, visit:

http://www.dbjohnsonart.com/about.html

To learn more about the Surrealism artist Rene Magritte, visit:

https://www.theartstory.org/artist-magritte-rene.htm

Creative Thinking Prompt: Write A Musical Autobiography

 

Creative Thinking Prompt: Write A Musical Autobiography

How might a series of songs represent your life?

As you begin to plot your autobiography, jot down songs or sounds that might represent you or an event in your life.

Step 1: Write out your timeline

  1. You can start with your birth or include a little bit of your family history.
  2. Think about events that changed you.
  3. Think about how you will organize your timeline. Do you want a song for each year of your life or certain life events?
  4. Are there certain movies or TV shows that “define” parts of your life?
  5. End your timeline with at least one future goal you have for yourself.

Step 2: Identify the characters in your life.

Are there particular songs or sounds that can represent people and/or things in your life?

  1. What were your favorite toys, activities, games, or books? What song or sound can represent these?
  2.  Did or do you have a favorite pet?
  3. How might your sibling(s) or being the only child influence you?
  4. What about friends? Coaches? Others who have been mentors to you?
  5. How about your parent(s) or other family members that have been strong influences on you?

Step 3: Collect Songs and Sounds

  1. With an adult’s help, download the songs you have chosen. Make sure you legally download your music.
  2. Put the songs in order of your timeline.
  3. Add a title to your song mix such as “All About Max.”

Think Deeper: Write an autobiographical poem.

Visit these sites for free music downloads: (https://www.digitalmusicnews.com/2017/06/25/top-free-music-download/)

  1. Jamendo Music

This is all independent music.  So if you’re looking for a big name artist, you’ll probably have to go elsewhere (try YouTube Music or Spotify).  Or pay at iTunes or Apple Music.

You’ll need a music downloader app to help organize it all (here’s a list of them).

Go to Jamendo Music here.

  1. PureVolume

PureVolume is a site that features lots of free music downloads from a range of different artists.

Check out PureVolume here.

  1. Amazon Music

 

Check out Amazon Music’s free music download section here.

  1. SoundClick

SoundClick offers free downloads from thousands of artist websites.  That includes signed, unsigned, independent, and everything in-between.

Manage your collection with a music downloader app.

Check out SoundClick here.