Read Aloud Thursday: Books to Inspire Creativity

Harold and the Purple Crayon 50th Anniversary Edition (Purple Crayon Books)

This little classic picture book is a charmer. It wasn’t a favorite of mine as a child and it’s taken awhile for me to warm up to it as an adult but both boys love Harold and he’s definitely grown on me too.  For those who don’t know the book, it’s quite simple. Harold goes for walk with his purple crayon and as he walks what he draws becomes reality. It’s all about adventure and imagination.

A Day With No Crayons

In this book by Elizabeth Rusch, a little girl has her crayons taken away as punishment for drawing on the walls. At first the world seems grey and depressing to her, but as the day goes on she discovers ways to create without crayons. Another deceptively simple story that celebrates creativity. I liked the way that the illustrations mirror her feelings, going from gray and drab to gradually having more and more color.

Go to Bed, Monster!

In this adorable book by Natasha Wing, a girl draws a monster with crayons and it comes to life. The monster is friendly and not at all scary but does run into trouble when it wants to keep playing and she is tired and ready for bed. She thinks up a perfect solution and saves the day  with her imagination and crayons.

Get Red! An Adventure in Color


This book by Tony Porto was fun for both boys, but I think more enjoyed by John. The humor was a little over the head of a 4 yr old. It tells the story of a rogue red crayon and all the trouble he’s caused for his owner.

From Wax to Crayon: A Photo Essay (Changes)

One of the fun things about doing preschool and Five in a Row a second time around is that because David and John have different personalities and interests, we focus on different things. John loves stories but he also adores non-fiction books. It’s common for him to choose an encyclopedia to read for free reading on his own. In each FIAR book we did we read a lot of non-fiction to go along with it and concentrated on science experiments as activities. David on the other hand loves art and cooking and stories that tend more to the silly. I still do art with John and science with David, they need to do what isn’t their favorite as well as what is, but in the preschool years in particular I think it’s fine to concentrate on what they like the most.

This book by Michael Forman was one John found fascinating when we read it 3 years ago. He still liked it this time around. David thought it was ok but it wasn’t his favorite of the week. I thought it was really interesting to see how crayons are made.

A Book About Color: A Clear and Simple Guide for Young Artists

I thought this book by Mark Gonyea was one of the best I have seen for introducing color theory to young kids. It covers primary and secondary colors, shades, value and the color wheel.  The text is easy to understand and the illustrations are simple and make the ideas very clear. It was a perfect set-up for spending a morning painting with the boys and experimenting with mixing colors themselves.

Don’t forget to check out what others are reading with their kids at Read Aloud Thursday  at Hope is the Word.

3 thoughts on “Read Aloud Thursday: Books to Inspire Creativity

  1. Pingback: Hope Is the Word » Blog Archive » RAT Links 2.3.11

  2. Pingback: Read Aloud Thursday: Three for the Imagination « Supratentorial

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