Tag Archives: nature

Ed Emberley’s ABC

“Ed Emberley’s ABC

Each letter of the alphabet tells a visual story while demonstrating how to write the letter by using an animal whose name begins with that letter writing the letter using an item which also begins with that letter.

Zebra rides a Zeppelin blimp, stringing lights as he goes to form the letter Z.

In the back of the book, Emberley demonstrates how to write each alphabet letter and lists items to find on each letter page (items start with that specific letter).

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

TITLE: A Child of Books

AUTHOR: Ed Emberley

ILLUSTRATOR: Ed Emberley

PUBLISHER: Little, Brown and Company, 1978

AGE GROUP: 4-6

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: creativity, imagination, nature, flexible thinking

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) What’s your favorite word? In what ways might you connect each letter to form your word? Remember there is no right or wrong answer. Get creative.

2) Brainstorm a list of animals that start with a letter of the alphabet. Pick one animal from that list. What trait(s) of that animal can be used to show how to write the letter? Sketch it out.

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author/illustrator Ed Emberley, visit:

http://www.edemberley.com/pages/main.aspx

Creative Thinking Prompt: Flower Portrait Art

Creative Thinking Prompt:  Flower Portrait Art

Do as artist Vicki of the Sister Golden Company does, create portraits with nature. Take a walk, collecting nature items such as twigs, petals, acorns, seeds, sand, flowers, leaves, etc. Ask permission before taking and/or cutting flowers. Sketch out your portrait idea. Use a flat surface such as a sidewalk to create your art. When you are done, take a picture and then allow nature to take your art wherever the wind may blow.

To view more flower portrait and nature art, visit:

https://sistergolden.com/collections/flower-art

http://www.boredpanda.com/portraits-from-flowers-twigs-sister-golden/

Creative Thinking Prompt: Snow Words

Creative Thinking Prompt: Create Your Own Snow Words

Many countries have different words for different types of snow. To date the Sami culture  of Finland, Norway, Sweden and Russia, are known to have 180 words to describe snow while the Scottish have over 413 words for snow.

http://www.k-international.com/blog/which-language-has-the-most-words-for-snow/

Skelf – snowflake (Scotland)

Snjór/Snær: Snow (Icelandic)

Ciegar: Snowfield which has been trampled and dug up by reindeer (Sami)

Lappvante- thick falling snow (Swedish)

Aputi: snow on the ground (Inuit/Yupik)

Creative Thinking Prompt: Create Your Own Snow Words

  1. Brainstorm different types of snow. Spark your imagination by looking at how other countries and cultures view snow.
  2. Invent 10 new words to describe different types of snow. Notice how your words sound and look. What if you used marks above vowels, how would that change the sound of your words?
  3. How would people unfamiliar with your language learn your new language?

For extra fun, experiment by making snow playdough using two ingredients.

SNOW DOUGH RECIPE 1

Equal amounts of each:

Cornstarch

Unscented Lotion

Optional:

Glitter and/or a drop of Peppermint Extract or Oil

SNOW PLAY DOUGH RECIPE 2 using baking soda and hair conditioner:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AZbjrYcNpPs

Creative Thinking Prompt: Animal Letter Writing

Prairie Dog
Creative Thinking Prompt: Animal Letter Writing

Look around your environment.

What types of animals of might live here?

Choose one animal to study.

Pretend to be that animal.

Write a letter to your best friend who is another animal in a different country.

Explain what is like to live where you live, what do you eat, how do you get food, what’s your home like, who are your “friends,” what’s your favorite thing to do, etc. Include a picture of yourself and your name. You could mail your letter to a friend or a family member and see if they write you back as an animal.

ACTUAL SIZE

Actual Size”

Actual Size written and illustrated by Steven Jenkins brings readers face to face with the actual size of an animal’s physical trait. Some featured animals and their traits in this book are a bear’s head, a dwarf goby fish, an anteater’s tongue, and a crocodile’s snout.

Readers can visually compare themselves to the animal by placing their hand against the page to compare and contrast similarities and differences.

Each page informs about the animal’s length, height and/or weight. Back matter includes facts about each animal.

This book promotes creative non-fiction, imagination, and discovery.

TITLE: Actual Size

AUTHOR: Steve Jenkins

ILLUSTRATOR: Steve Jenkins

PUBLISHER: Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004

AGE GROUP: 4-8

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: creative nonfiction, imagination, discovery

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Pick an animal and one of its body parts that you can compare and contrast. Draw that part to its actual size. This activity could also be made into a classroom book.

2) How could you creatively present information about your favorite animal? With a group of friends pick different animals to research. Then write a play or song using the facts you learned. Present your play.

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author/illustrator Steve Jenkins, visit:

http://www.stevejenkinsbooks.com

Narwhal: Unicorn of the Sea!

Narwhal: Unicorn of the Sea!”

Filled with humor and friendship, Ben Clanton’s graphic novel, Narwhal: Unicorn of the Sea, geared toward elementary school readers features three stories with “intermissions.” In the first story, Narwhal and Jelly think each is imaginary. When they find they both love waffles, they become best friends. In the second story, Narwhal searches for his pod family. When he doesn’t find them, he makes his own, asking ocean friends to become honorary tusk-wearing members. But Jelly feels left out. In the third story, Narwhal shares his favorite imagination book with Jelly except the pages are blank.

This book promotes creativity, nature, humor, and originality.

TITLE: Narwhal: Unicorn of the Sea!

AUTHOR: Ben Clanton

ILLUSTRATOR: Ben Clanton

PUBLISHER: Tundra Books, 2016

AGE GROUP: 6-9

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: creativity, humor, imagination

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Create two best friend cartoon characters. Sketch them and give them names. Write a story about them using their imaginations.

2) Writers use word play – a play on words to enhance their writing and deepen their characters. Ben Clanton used “Tentacular!” as dialogue for his octopus character and “Podtastic!” to describe Narwhal and his group of friends. Use word play in your writing to: What might your best friend cartoon characters say? What behavior might they exhibit?

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author/illustrator Ben Clanton, visit:

http://www.benclanton.com

Owl Sees Owl

Owl Sees Owl”

In Owl Sees Owl, a union of text and pictures come together to tell the story of Little Owl who is ready for a night adventure on his own. He leaves the nest and soars across fields and forests. What will he find?

Told in the form of a reverso poem, Little Owl makes a discovery and then safely returns home. A reverso poem is a poem that uses the same words forwards and then reuses the same words in reverse order.

This book promotes creativity, nature, and originality.

TITLE: Owl Sees Owl

AUTHOR: Laura Godwin

ILLUSTRATOR: Rob Dunlavey

PUBLISHER: Schwartz & Wade Books, 2016

AGE GROUP: 4-7

CREATIVE COMPONENTS: creativity, nature, originality

LEARNING EXTENSIONS:

1) Research a favorite animal of yours. Make a list of 8 adjectives, 8 nouns, and 8 verbs that describe your animal. Arrange these words into a poem.

2) Try your hand at writing a reverso poem.

http://www.readbrightly.com/reverso-poetry-writing-verse-reverse/

EXTENDING CONNECTIONS:

To learn more about author Laura Godwin, visit:

http://www.publishersweekly.com/pw/by-topic/childrens/childrens-industry-news/article/72307-a-dual-career-comes-full-circle-for-laura-godwin.html

To learn more about illustrator Rob Dunlavey, visit:

http://www.robd.com

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: Snow Artist Simon Beck

snowartsimonbeck

Simon Beck Snow Art

12-2-16 Creative Thinking Prompt: Snow Artist Simon Beck

With an engineering background and a keen sense of direction, snowshoe-cladded Simon Beck treks through the snow creating awe-inspiring geometric art.

In this six minute video, watch Beck work and discover what inspires his designs. https://vimeo.com/155292692

Creative Thinking Prompt: Design a geometric image. First sketch it on paper, then draw it in fresh snow or in sand.

To learn more about Simon Beck, visit:

http://snowart.gallery/about_Simon_Beck.php

To view more of Simon Beck’s snow art, visit:

http://www.thisiscolossal.com/2016/01/simon-beck-snow-art/

“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/