Friday, May 10, 2013

PPBF: Chloe and the Lion

Today's Perfect Picture Book Friday pick


Chloe and the Lion, by Mac Barnett and Adam Rex
Chloe and the Lion
Written by Mac Barnett
Illustrated by Adam Rex
Disney - Hyperion, 2012, Fiction, ages 4-8

Themes:
Humor, Cooperation, Problem solving, Imagination, Book Creation

Opening:
"This is me, Mac.
I'm the author of this book.
This is my friend Adam.
He's the illustrator of this book.
And this is Chloe.
She's the main character of this book."

Synopsis:
Words fail me. This hilarious confection needs to be experienced.
Let's say it's a story-within-a-story. Chloe meets danger in the forest while Mac and Adam try to get the book written (and illustrated).

What I Love:
I had to find out for myself what all the fuss was about concerning this book.  I'm only sorry it took me so long.  I laughed out loud in the library - oops!
I love the page layouts, the unique placement of text and images, the creative use of media, and the sheer bizarre genius that understands what kids love.
Kids (both boys and girls, but especially mischievous boys) will love the wacky, unexpected, irreverent turns of events.  Kids love being smarter than the grown-ups in the story.  They love being able to see a solution even though the adult characters do not.

Bonus:
1. Adam Rex's clay characters are an obvious inspiration for creating people, animals, or whole dioramas in clay. If you are adventurous, here is a "by students, for students" link about claymation.
2. For younger children, try a simple paper lion from firstpalette.com, a yarn-wrapped lion from freekidscrafts.com, or a lion made by tracing your child's hands.
3. Make and share lion cupcakes using Cracker Jacks popcorn.
4. This book is the perfect springboard for a discussion about how picture books are made. Definitely use this story to encourage kids to write and illustrate their own versions of stories they know, inserting unexpected twists or changing the endings. ReadWriteThink has a thorough book planning resource for teachers.
5. Make Chloe and the Lion come to life in a neighborhood or school production. Spoiler Alert! (The redrawn parts of the story are tricky, but can be accomplished with costuming. Kids may have an even more creative solution.)

Check out all the recommended titles for Perfect Picture Book Friday for May 10, 2013 at Susanna Leonard Hill's blog.

16 comments:

  1. Love your activities. I read this one as one of the CYBILS finalists and find it uber clever and with loads of quirky kid-appeal.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for stopping by. This is kind of a how-did-he think-of-that? / Why-didn't I think-of-that? kinda book.

      Delete
  2. Looks fun - and I love your activities....and the excuse to buy cracker jacks. :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I have seen this one before, and Love it. Very funny and kids will just love it. Love your activities, yum those cup cakes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank-you for your comments. I sort-of over did it on the activities, but they all seemed like fun ideas to me.

      Delete
  4. Great activities, and wow - you make this book sound so great I'm anxious to read it this minute! It sounds so funny :) Thanks for sharing! I hope my library has it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hope your library can get it for you. I am not usually into the absurd humor books, but this one is so clever! Enjoy.

      Delete
  5. I've read this book...and I'm with you, it is funny! I really enjoyed it. Love your activities. I want one of those cupcakes. The Crackerjacks make such a cute mane!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I guess I shouldn't have expected less from Mac Barnett. Extra Yarn is one of my favorite books from 2012. Thanks for dropping by!

      Delete
  6. Haven't seen this book, but I like quirky and will get a copy. Sounds like a lot of fun! Love your activities.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank-you. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. A good choice for your next bad day.

      Delete
  7. This book is hilarious. It was my girls favorite read last summer. We also got to see Mac participate in a Reader's Theater of it with a few students, it was cool.
    Great list of activity ideas.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Cool! I hope to hear about the highlights of your author encounter on your blog. Thank-you for commenting.

      Delete
  8. Super book, Joanne! I love it because it shows how different types of stories and writing can make a cool and successful children's book. :)
    Lovely review and great activities...I'm totally into hand-print art...do it with the kindergartens I visit all the time.:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You are so right, Vivian. I love discovering books out of my normal comfort zone. Thanks for your kind words.

      Delete

Thank-you for taking time to share your thoughts!