Monday, October 27, 2014

Harold and the Purple Crayon, by Crockett Johnson {1955}


Years before having children I spotted a copy of The Adventures of Harold and the Purple Crayon marked down to only a few dollars in the Border's {remember that place?} clearance section. Knowing it was a classic, I snatched it right up- and I am so glad I did. S loves hearing about Harold and his clever adventures, especially since the moon {one of her favorite things}is a key feature in the story.

Plot. One evening, little Harold decides to go on an adventure. With his purple crayon leading the way, he encounters an apple tree, a dragon, the ocean and a picnic of pies... and arrives home just in time to draw up the covers and drop off to sleep.

Thematic Elements. Harold is the ultimate problem solver. He draws himself into a pickle, then draws his way right back out of it.

Educational Opportunities. Older kids could learn about fractions with Harold's pies as a teaching tool. Since the moon has a prominent place in the story, you could also do a more in-depth unit study on the moon {science}.

Activities. 
  • Give your child a white piece of paper and a purple crayon to doodle along as you read the book. 
  • Royal Baloo has a ton of great lesson plan ideas to accompany the book- including a printable Harold puzzle, purple sensory bin, feeding pie to homemade paper bag porcupine and moose, etc. 
  • Delightful Learning also has lots of awesome ideas. She hosted a Harold Picnic Party {the pictures are darling}, made purple moon sand, had her kids learn about colors by experimenting with mixing red and blue paint to make purple, and even made edible "purple crayons." 
  • Practice threading with a moon cut out and purple yarn. 
  • Finally, I Can Do That So Can You... shared a bunch of fun activities to accompany the book {Purple/Not Purple sorting game, make purple jello for a snack, purple moon number flash cards and crayons counting game, etc.}.

Be sure to also check out... Harold's Fairy Tale, Harold's Trip to the Sky, and Harold's Circus. Also the author/illustrator of Harold collaborated with his wife, Ruth Krauss, on The Carrot Seed, How to Make an Earthquake, Is this You?, and The Happy Egg.



Looking for more great books to read with your preschooler? Check out the rest of this 31 Days series here!

Some of the links above are affiliate links- which means that if you make a purchase through them, I receive a small profit at no extra charge to you. But you should know that I am an avid believer in reading for free through both local and church libraries ;). Thanks for supporting The Purposeful Wife!

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