Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Connecting with a Book

When I taught preschool my lesson plans emphasized literacy and art. Now that I’m home with the grandboys and trying to provide purposeful play opportunities, I’m finding that same tendency when I plan activities. I like to connect what we’re doing or making with a book, so when Bradley discovered Nick’s old copies of a couple of Harold and the Purple Crayon books by Crockett Johnson early in the summer and loved them, the obvious thing to do was some sort of purple line pictures. He particularly liked the circus themed book, so I asked him to choose a drawing from the book, and we’d put it on the playroom wall. He chose this picture:

Harold and the Purple Crayon (21)

I didn’t really measure, just used a level to draw and tape off straight lines, then had Bradley paint a large white rectangle on the wall. This was the first week in August.


About 10 days later, my son Nick came for an afternoon and drew the picture from the book onto the white space on the wall.

Harold and the Purple Crayon (9)

Then he and the boys painted the outlines in purple paint.

Harold and the Purple Crayon (13)

Harold and the Purple Crayon (16)

Silas was thrilled to be included, but no photos of that. I was much too busy keeping the purple paint on just that white square part of the wall. LOL. When they finished with the purple outlines, we left it to dry. It was a tad messy and some of the paint got drippy.

Harold and the Purple Crayon (17)


I finished the painting over the next week, cleaning up the drips and some of Silas’s brush marks. Now, normally I wouldn’t touch it, but Brad wanted it to be like the picture in the book, and while it’s not a perfect copy, cleaning it up a bit helped. I left some of Silas’s marks, though, so he had a part in the project.

Harold and the Purple Crayon (3)

Here is Bradley with our final product. (Silas was invited several times to join his brother for this final photo, but he was not interested; also, it really is straight on the wall – I just must’ve taken a crooked photo...) I love how we put something of Brad’s favorite book from this summer in the playroom. My plan for this room is to let the kids contribute to the decor, so they feel this room is theirs.

Brad’s getting a collection of Harold and the Purple Crayon books of his own for his birthday. We may be adding to our art collection in the near future if he likes these new books as well as the old!

1 comment:

  1. Tammy, this is such a great post! Bradley looks proud as punch and yea for Uncle Nick both for being a sweet helpful uncle and for being in the pictures,
    I know all about that unwillingness to pose for photos, that is how Elizabeth is. I sometimes have to bribe here when I really need a photo.

    I have never read the purple crayon books but I think I need too and am going to and order one now.


Thanks for sharing!