“I am an artist…” begins Eric Carle’s vibrant tribute to the creative life. And just like an imaginative child, this is one artist who paints the world as he sees it-a red crocodile, an orange elephant, a purple fox, a black polar bear and a wonderful polka-dotted donkey.
Filled with some of the most magnificently colourful animals of Eric Carle’s career, this is a book that celebrates imagination and the artist within us all.
Teaching Ideas and Resources:
- Write a letter to a famous artist.
- Choose one of the colourful animals in the book and write a story about it.
- Use the information in the back of the book to create your own biography of Eric Carle or Franz Marc.
- Write questions for an interview with Eric Carle.
- Think about the real colours of different animals. Why are they particular colours? Which animals are camouflaged and how does this help them?
- Choose one of the animals featured in the story. Create a report to teach others about it.
- Use painting software to colour a horse picture in the ‘wrong’ colours?(see Resources below).
- Can you make a model of a strangely coloured animal?
- Can you find out about a famous artist? What works of art have they created? What media did they use?
- How many different colours can you see in the illustrations? How many different shades of these colours are there? What are the different names for the shades?
- Can you make your own version of Franz Marc’s ‘Blue Horse I’ painting?
- Create your own pictures of animals painted with the ‘wrong’ colours. Could you work with a friend to make a whole ‘zoo’ of unusual animals?
- Make pictures of other objects (e.g. people / buildings / toys) in the ‘wrong’ colours.
- Watch the video above (in the Literacy section) to see how Eric Carle creates a picture of a blue horse. Could you use similar techniques to make your own?
- Use different types of art materials to create lots of pictures of a blue horse. Which material did you enjoy using the most? Which type is most effective? Why?
- Look at the posture of each animal in the illustrations. Is the animal moving / stationary? How do you know? Can you draw pictures of the same type of animal in different poses?
- Use the template to draw your own picture of a horse?(see Resources below).
- Use photos of horses as a starting point for your own sketches / paintings?(see Resources below).
- Compose the lyrics to a song about a blue horse.
- Find out about the habitats of the animals featured in the story. Where do they live? What is it like there?
- Could you plot the natural habitats of each animal on a map?