Bringing books to life with children is such an amazing way to incorporate early literacy activities in the classroom. And, not to mention, it’s a great way to get the children excited about learning! Here, I’ll outline how we brought the storybook, Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus to life with a fun craft.
I am so excited to have Ariadne of Positive Parenting Connection here today! Her site is an amazing resource for parents, so be sure to pop on over there after you’ve read how she goes about bringing books to life with her children.
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Bringing books to life is a lot of fun and a wonderful learning opportunity for young children. Once a week or so my daughter and I will choose a book that we love, read it and then find ways to bring the book to life. Aside from being lots of fun and a great way for us to connect, by doing this my daughter also has an opportunity to work on:
- reading comprehension
- creative thinking
- recognizing letters, numbers, colors, shapes and patterns
- exploring social and emotional skills
- sharing and taking turns
Some of the ways we bring books to life are by doing story book scavenger hunts and by creating picture collages together or acting out different parts of the story.
Recently we read Mo Willems’ Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! To bring this story to life we decided to create a collage. My daughter chose which pictures she wanted to re-create from the illustrations and then we set out to gather materials together. Next we talked about the shapes in the book and cut these shapes out of construction paper.
We decided that the bus has rectangles, squares and circles and the pigeon has a half circle, circles, rectangle and triangles. “Sort of, triangles, but not really” said my daughter, “ the beak is more like the shape of a, well a beak, mama, not a triangle!”
As we were re-creating the images with our shapes we talked about the story. So in the book, page after page, there is this adorable, funny and silly pigeon asking, begging, pleading and negotiating with the reader to let him drive a bus. The problem is the bus driver has asked the reader to keep an eye on the bus and specifically said to not let the pigeon drive it. This gave us a great chance to talk about what we can do when we really, really want something but someone has said no. (That hardly happens to three year olds right?!!)
Once our collage was done, my daughter took the pigeon picture around to some of her toys and we invited the pigeon to drive some of the toy cars, take a ride on a little horse toy and then she decided to gift her pigeon the bus she had recreated “This bus, is all for you pigeon, you can drive it anytime you want!” she added.
Aside from being a super funny book, bringing this story to life was also a great window of opportunity to talk about limits and how thinking about solutions and alternatives is probably more productive than begging, getting mad or whining when we really, really want something.
Do you enjoy creative reading projects with your child? Have you ever used the creative projects or books as a way to talk about social and emotional skills like sharing, taking turns or finding solutions? Do you enjoy bringing books to life with your children?
Peace & Be Well,
Ariadne is a happy and busy mama to three children. She practices peaceful, playful, responsive parenting and is passionate about all things parenting and chocolate. Ariadne has a B.S. in Communication, is a certified Positive Discipline Parenting Educator, and has completed several graduate courses in Psychology and Family Counseling. To avoid doing laundry Ariadne created the Positive Parenting Connection, a website dedicated to collecting and sharing resources, ideas, tips and helpful information with other parents that are striving to have connected, peaceful relationships with their children. You can find her on Facebook and Pinterest, as well.
Reading with young children is so important. So, I never pass up an opportunity to make some great book recommendations. Here are some of my favorite books to share with preschoolers (I may get commissions for purchases made through links in this post):
How would you bring these books to life? Make sure to let us know in the comments below!
Done-for-You Preschool Resources
Planning meaningful lessons for students week after week while balancing other teaching responsibilities and a personal life can be a daunting task. That’s where Preschool Teacher 101 comes in to save you time!
Speaking of bringing books to life, preschool Teacher 101 has created some amazing resources based on some common folk tales and books! Click on the images below to learn more.
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