Friday, June 8, 2012

Not a Box by Antoinette Portis

Not a Box by Antoinette Portis

Rating: 4 stars

It was shape week at our house this week.  I know.  Random.  But I'm a girl who likes a plan, and with the start of summer, I wanted a framework of some sort or else I feel like the days are too loosey-goosey (spell check didn't like that) for my liking.  God forbid we have a week without accomplishing something!

So we tried to eat lots of different shapes.  We ate quesadillas shaped like triangles, cucumbers cut up as half-moons, star cut-out cookies, pancakes with blueberries for circles (a double whammy!), bell pepper strips for rectangles to name a few.

We played with tangrams or tangram-like activities, and then for our field trip we went on a shape hunt at our local zoo.  I know that sounds incredibly dorky, but the kids were totally into it and we wondered if we even recruited a friend to go with us whose mom didn't roll her eyes at my excitement over finding a feeding bin shaped like a triangle.  That's a friend for you.  Click here for more details of our shape hunt at the zoo.

It's not a box.  It's a burning building!
During a playdate one afternoon we read Not A Box, which is probably a book everyone knows about already.  It's simple--aren't the best things simple?  Portis (whose book A Penguin Story we love love love) shows how a cute, simply drawn bunny can transport a simple box into anything he wants with his imagination.  My kids aren't box-crazy yet, but they did get into this story for the shape aspect of it.  After my friend read all the book while I cooked dinner for the kids, she handed out a piece of paper with a rectangle on it and each kid transformed their rectangle into a "not-a-box."

I was actually bummed not to participate--when was the last time YOU did an art project?  Probably too long ago.  I find it so enjoyable to stop cleaning, stop blogging, stop picking up the kitchen for the upteenth time to just...draw and paint with my kids.  Priceless stuff.  Anyway, I digress.

Good book and easy activity to provide an opportunity for a little creativity.  Not bad!

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