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The boys asked to row Harold and the Purple Crayon. I admit, I've never particularly loved this book, but my kids always have. I knew there was a lot I could do for all three, even with their wide age range, so I went for it.
Humor, Setting, Narration
We discussed the humor and puns used in the story. Elliott liked how Harold "drew up his covers" at the end of the story! Then we learned that the setting is progressive, because it is constantly changing. I asked the kids to choose a color and draw their own progressive stories on easel paper.
Emory's picture was called "Emory and the Giant Blue Crayon" which included a bug, a giant apple with a giant worm coming out of it, and a hot air balloon. Perhaps not progressive, but definitely creative.
Eleanor drew whatever Emory drew.
Elliott actually drew a progressive story. He started at the apple tree, ran to the airplane which flew him to the water so he could race his sailboat to the finish line!
I thought this Purple Pie worksheet was perfect for Emory for this book, and I created a copywork page for Elliott with a quote from the book at Worksheet Works.
Harold's Fairy Tale
Harold's Trip to the Sky.
We decided to place our story disk in PA since that's where the Crayola factory is located. There was no social studies lesson for this book, so we spent some time reviewing some geography and topics from our previous rows.
For Eleanor, we just talked about colors. This cute crayon puzzle was from the dollar tree years ago. She named colors and we told her where they went, or we read the color names, and she found the correct match.
I combined and tweaked an art and a math lesson from the manual for both boys. I drew out the buildings first for simplicity, and then gave them dominoes. Emory added his to determine how many windows for each building.
Elliott multiplied to find the number of windows for his buildings. He was going for the diversified look for his city. I think. But he was also in a hurry. ;)
Then Emory spent some time drawing his own buildings with many windows and doors.
I printed a few Fraction Circles on cardstock and let the kids put them together. Eleanor could do the 1/2 fraction circle on her own, and the boys could of course do the others. While we were doing this, I discussed the lesson in the manual on thirds and improper fractions with Elliott.
The next day I gave Emory another 1/3 fraction circle and we discussed thirds (how much would Elliott, Emory and Eleanor each get if we split the pie equally) and then he colored his 1/3 portion and glued it back together.
Elliott did a Slice of Pie fraction worksheet for review. It reminded him that he had to pay attention to both the numerator and denominator as a whole.
Crayons (and hot air balloons!)
I wanted to keep this row light, and fun, and focus on the creative side of the book. So instead of doing the lessons from the manual (which we can cover through other books), we had fun learning about crayons. We watched Mr. Rogers shows how to make Crayons, The Life of an American Crayon, and Here's How #3 - Crayons and Markers to learn how crayons and markers are made. They colored pictures with markers while they watched these videos.
The last one led us to seeing the thumbnail for Here's How #4 - Balloons and it was about hot air balloons, which we also watched since Harold took a hot air balloon flight.
We listened to the Flying Purple People Eater song more times than I care to count.
We made new crayons from our broken ones. Peeling wrappers is excellent fine motor activity, and something Eleanor enjoys doing anyway!
We separated them into color groups and melted them into hot wax in the oven, before pouring them into our play-doh cookie cutters to mold them into fun shapes.
The teddy bear was so cute and was probably my favorite. Until I broke him.
Of course with talking about Harold and art and colors, we got out ARTistic Pursuits and did an overdue lesson. Actually, we decided we should go back to the very beginning of the first book and start over. Elliott loves the idea of ALL that art, and I like the idea of going systematically in order. Watercolor crayons did give us the chance to talk a little about color mixing.
Eleanor was given some inexpensive watercolors ($0.49!) to experiment with for the first time. For the price, she can do whatever she wants with them, and the boys nicer paints are kept clean.
Food & Cooking
We had purple smoothies for a snack one day. Elliott and Eleanor made cherry picnic pies from the cookbook, and we had mini chicken pot pies for dinner one night!
We managed to keep this row light and fun, which is what we needed for the end of the year. The kids loved it.
Read Aloud Wednesday
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