Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Read with Me! Book 21 - Harold and the Purple Crayon

Harold and the Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson

This book was nostalgic for my husband, so it was fun watching him remember reading it as a child while my daughter was hearing it for the first time. At first I was nervous that the simple pictures and abstract concept (of drawing an adventure that was "actually" happening) would be boring for her. However, she loved it! I started out reading and asking questions as we always do and the first question I asked was "What did he draw?" She said "a moon" - which was a correct answer, but gave me the inspiration to start working on irregular past tense verbs. We have been talking about irregular past tense verbs (where you don't add the -ed to the end of the verb) around our house a lot recently. We have been talking about throw/threw, cut/cut (not cutted!), drink/drank and eat/ate. So, as we read this story we used the word "drew." He drew a moon.
Other irregular past tense verbs in this story and in the pictures are: take/took, make/made, go/went, lead/led, get/got, hold/held, swim/swam, think/thought, lay/laid, leave/left, know/knew, think/thought, feel/felt, fall/fell and of course draw/drew!

Some other language concepts you can focus on are:

Predicting: If you preview the book, you'll be able to know which pages have the ability to have a prediction. At the very beginning, he wants to go for a walk in the moonlight, so what does he need? What kind of tree does he make in his one tree forest? What is he making when his hand shook with the crayon in it? What should he draw so that he doesn't have to swim in the ocean? What should he serve at his picnic? Who should eat the left over food? The opportunities go on and on! I always love to hear her guesses!

Phases of the Moon: this was not my idea (just a little disclaimer!), I got this idea from one of the pinterest activities I saw. In the book, Harold draws a half moon. Most stories have full moons or crescent moons, so it's good to see a half moon. I would head outside and see what phase the moon is in right now. My daughter loves to point out the moon, day or night, when she sees it. So we frequently talk about what shape it is, but now we will actually talk about it using the phrase "phase of the moon" just to kick up the vocabulary level of what we are already talking about.

Vocabulary: if you have a younger child, this story has simple pictures that can help develop your child's print awareness (the concept that something printed on a page represents something in real life). Children have the easiest time comprehending real objects, then pictures of real objects and then drawings of objects. The drawing of an object is the most abstract and therefore the most difficult to comprehend. Reading books with pictures of objects and books with drawings of objects help children make the developmental step!

This story is great! I hope you and your child enjoy it! For more activities that go along with Harold and the Purple Crayon check out my pinterest page.

If you are interested in buying this book, here is a link to Amazon or go check it out at your local library!

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