Category Archives: Flexible Thinking

My Heart Is Like A Zoo

My Heart Is Like A Zoo”

In My Heart Is Like A Zoo, author/illustrator Michael Hall writes in rhyme, exploring zoo animals as metaphors for love traits such as steady, happy, and silly. Made from a variety of heart shapes, his animal illustrations further depict the message of love.

“Eager as a beaver.”

“Quiet as a caterpillar wearing knitted socks.”

How many hearts can you count throughout this book?

This book promotes inventive, originality, analogical, and creative thinking.

TITLE: My Heart Is Like A Zoo

AUTHOR: Michael Hall

ILLUSTRATOR: Michael Hall

PUBLISHER: Harper Collins Children’s Books, 2010

AGE GROUP: 3-6

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: inventive, originality, analogical, and creative thinking

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) From construction paper, cut a variety of heart shapes. Combine, arrange and rearrange these shapes to create a new heart-shaped animal. What’s your animal’s name? What part of love does your animal represent? As a group, create a classroom heart book, My Heart Is Full Of Animals.

2) Draw a heart shape. Fill it with heart designs. Cut it out and give it to someone you love.

3) Construct a 3-D heart using only heart shaped cutouts.

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author/illustrator Michael Hall, visit:

http://www.michaelhallstudio.com/index.html

Creative Thinking Prompt: What Else Can A Hand Be?

http://worldwhiteweb.net

Creative Thinking Prompt: What Else Can A Hand Be?

Artist Guido Daniele paints on a very unique surface. Hands!

He sees a hand as a turtle

Turtle Caretta Caretta – Ph. Guido Daniele

© Guido Daniele

and as a tree

Tree – Ph. Guido Daniele

© Guido Daniele

and as a turkey.

Turkey – Ph. Guido Daniele

© Guido Daniele

Creative Thinking Prompt: What Else Can A Hand Be?

Brainstorm ideas for what else a hand can be.

Here are a few ideas to get started – a communicator, a language maker.

Brainstorm other unique surfaces that an artist can paint on?

Here are a few ideas to get started – a leaf, a fire hydrant, a kitchen faucet.

Try your hand at painting on an unusual surface. Just make sure that you have permission before painting.

To view Guido Daniele’s artwork, visit:

http://www.guidodaniele.com/hand-painting/handpaint-art.html

http://blog.keralites.net/2011/12/incredible-hand-paintings-of-guido.html

Tomorrow’s Alphabet

Tomorrow’s Alphabet”

In Tomorrow’s Alphabet, you’ll have to think ahead. Not your ordinary alphabet storybook, author George Shannon takes a different perspective, taking what happens today and showing what it becomes tomorrow.

   

M is for caterpillar – tomorrow’s MOTH.”

  

O is for acorn – tomorrow’s OAK TREE

In the back of the book, readers are challenged to create their own tomorrow alphabet. Or try their hand at creating yesterday’s alphabet.

This book promotes discovery, different perspective, and inventive thinking.

TITLE: Tomorrow’s Alphabet

AUTHOR: George Shannon

ILLUSTRATOR: Donald Crews

PUBLISHER: Greenwillow Books, 1996

AGE GROUP: 4-7

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: discovery, different perspective, inventive thinking

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Make an ABC list of your favorite sounding words. Your words can begin or end with each letter of the alphabet.

For example, A – apricot B – bumble C – cubic

2) Sing the ABC song in reverse, beginning with Z.

3) Write an ABC poem of your favorite things, using each letter to start the next line of your poem.

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author George Shannon, visit:

http://www.georgeshannonauthor.com

To learn more about illustrator Donald Crews, visit:

http://www.kidsreads.com/authors/donald-crews

Creative Thinking Prompt: Paintblots

Creative Thinking Prompt: Paint Blots

What do you see in the above paint blot? I see a person facing left and a person facing right. Traditionally, ink blots are blotted patterns of spilled ink that are used in personality tests. Instead of using black ink, I used gold paint. And we will use blots for fun – to feed our imaginations.

I see a praying mantis and a dinosaur skull. What do you see?

I see a maple leaf. When I turn it upside-down, I see a turtle. What do you see?

Create your own paint blots. Fold a piece of paper in half. Unfold it. On one half of the paper, place a few blobs of paint. Fold the paper and pat your hand over the paper. Unfold. What images do you see? Turn the paper 90 degrees. What do you see now? Turn it again. What do you see again? Ask others what they see? How does their interpretations differ from yours?

One Family

onefamilycover

“One Family

 How many things can One be? One isn’t just singular – it is made of many.

onefamilyp1

A family comes in all shapes and sizes. In the book, One Family celebrates families and their individuality.

onefamilyp2onefamilyp3

Illustrator Blanca Gomez’s pictures show what else One can be as well as the different varieties that families come in.

This book promotes flexible thinking, individuality, and parts of a whole.

TITLE: One Family

AUTHOR: George Shannon

ILLUSTRATOR: Blanca Gomez

PUBLISHER: Farrar Straus Giroux Books for Young Readers, 2015

AGE GROUP: 4-7

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: flexible thinking, individuality, and parts of a whole

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Think of one as plural. What else is one? Make a list. Also, think globally. For example, one community and one country.

2) What number makes up your family? Once you have your number, list three other things that is that number. For example, if 12 is your family number, then… One is twelve. One dozen eggs. One bag of tennis balls. One family.

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author George Shannon, visit:

http://www.georgeshannonauthor.com

To learn more about illustrator Blanca Gomez, visit:

http://cosasminimas.com/about/

“All Year Round”

allyearround

“All Year Round

 In All Year Round, author Susan Katz creates whimsical, rhyming poems that teach shapes, seasons, and the twelve months of the year – all rolled into one. Each month is paired with a shape. March is paired with an oval.

allyearroundpage1

July and summer are paired with a rectangle.

allyearroundpage2

Eiko Ojala’s 3-D illustrations make you want to jump into the book.

This book promotes concepts, making connections, nature and flexible thinking.

TITLE: All Year Round

AUTHOR: Susan Katz

ILLUSTRATOR: Eiko Ojala

PUBLISHER: Orchard Books, 2016

AGE GROUP: 3-6

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: flexible thinking, nature, making connections

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) What’s your favorite shape? What is your favorite month of the year? Connect your shape and month – what do they share in common?

2) How many shapes can you think of? Brainstorm for at least ten minutes, making a list of all the shapes you can think up. Pick six shapes from your list and use them together to form an image.

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author Susan Katz, visit:

http://www.susankatzbooks.com

To learn more about illustrator Eiko Ojala, visit:

http://ploom.tv

http://www.thisiscolossal.com/2016/05/editorial-illustrations-cut-paper-textures-and-shadows-eiko-ojala/

Creative Thinking Prompt: How Will You Fill Your Cornucopia?

cornucopia-clip-art-borders-clipart-panda-free-clipart-images-ylkb7x-clipart

Creative Thinking Prompt: How will you fill your cornucopia?

Cornucopias are common symbols of the Earth’s harvest and abundance. Shaped like a horn, it is filled to the brim with fruits and vegetables of the season. Originally from Greek mythology, the goat’s horn, which nourished Zeus, never went dry. Later Zeus put the goat’s image in the sky, now known as constellation Capricorn. This story is one of many that surrounds the cornucopia. “Cornu” means “horn” in Latin.

Play Roll A Cornucopia, a free game from 3 Dinosaurs. Then invent your own cornucopia game. What will you fill your cornucopia with?

cornucopiagame

http://www.3dinosaurs.com/wordpress/index.php/free-roll-a-cornucopia-printable/

To learn more about the cornucopia, visit:

http://www.brighthubeducation.com/history-homework-help/126590-what-is-a-cornucopia/

https://www.reference.com/history/cornucopia-symbolize-12ebe6355b82f617#

Think Deeper: What else can a cornucopia be used for?

Frida and Bear Play the Shape Game

fridaandbearshapegame

Frida and Bear Play the Shape Game”

Best friends Frida and Bear love to draw until one day Bear runs out of ideas. Frida draws a strange shape.

fridaandbearplayshapegamep1

Bear draws the shape into a dog.

fridanadbearplayshapegamep2

And the Shape Game begins. Bear hands Frida a twig. She draws wings around the twig to create a butterfly. The friends take turns drawing and inventing new pictures.

This story promotes imagination, flexible thinking, making connections, and creative expression.

TITLE: Frida and Bear Play the Shape Game

AUTHOR: Anthony Browne

ILLUSTRATOR: Hanne Bartholin

PUBLISHER: Candlewick Press, 2015

AGE GROUP: 4-7

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: imagination, flexible thinking, making connections, creative expression

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Draw an unusual shape. Have your partner transform it into something else. Take turns drawing.

2) Play the Shape Game from the book to create an entire new world.

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author Anthony Browne, visit:

http://www.anthonybrownebooks.com

Hanne Bartholin is a Danish illustrator and recipient of the Danish Ministry of Culture Illustration Prize.

Here’s a previous post about a drawing game called Squiggles.

“Grandpa Gazillion’s Number Yard”

grandpagazillionsnumberyard

“Grandpa Gazillion’s Number Yard 

Numbers aren’t only for counting! Have a special problem? In Grandpa Gazillion’s Number Yard, Grandpa Gazillion has a number that can fix it. Select from numbers 1 – 20 in his yard. Laurie Keller writes and illustrates a creative counting story in rhyme.

grandpagazillionpg1

grandpagazillion

This book promotes flexible thinking, imagination, humor, and creativity.

TITLE: Grandpa Gazillion’s Number Yard

AUTHOR: Laurie Keller

ILLUSTRATOR: Laurie Keller

PUBLISHER: Henry Holt and Company, 2005

AGE GROUP: 4-7

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: flexible thinking, imagination, humor, creativity

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Pick five numbers between twenty-one and thirty. What problem can each number solve? Look at the shapes, curves and lines of each number. Look at them from different perspectives – left, right, upside down. Invent five unusual uses for each chosen number.

2) Continue the Story. In your bedroom, find four objects that resemble numbers. Now replace each “number object” with a different number. Does it change the original object’s function?

3) Number Conga Square. Without lifting your pencil make a continuous line, writing as many numbers as you can inside a 2” x 2” square.

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author/illustrator Laurie Keller, visit:

http://www.lauriekeller.com

Creative Thinking Prompt: Visual Puns

11-4-16 Creative Thinking Prompt: Visual Puns

A visual pun is a play on words using images.

laughinggasvisualpun

“Laughing Gas” from Punny Pixels http://digitalsynopsis.com/design/punny-pixels-illustrated-puns-visual-wordplay/

A pun:

  • uses a word that has a double meaning or different associations
  • can communicate a message without using written words
  • figurative language – uses words or expressions with a meaning that is different from the literal interpretation
  • combines two or more symbols to form a new meaning

Visual puns are fun and a clever way to use your creativity.

Can you guess what this is?

eggplantanndrawing

If not here’s its realistic counterpart.

eggplant-1717224_1280

Creative Thinking Prompt: Create your own visual puns. Here’s a list to get you started:  ipod, butterfly, bookworm, fruit fly, running shoes, house fly.

Think Deeper: Invent a visual pun joke.

Here’s my visual pun joke.

fryingpan3

What did the eggs do when they saw the frying pan?

scrambled-eggs3

They scrambled away.