Getting Creative with Books

Bringing books to life with creative dramatics.

Oh, go outside and play! 

How many of us heard this growing up… and how many of us say it to our children?  When we send children to play we are helping our children learn and learn about their world.  Play is described as “the most important activity of early childhood… play is learning” (Barbour in “Prop Box” 7). 

As parents and caregivers, we can make play even more rewarding through dramatic play which enhances social, language and physical skills.  Dramatic play is a chance for children to reenact the everyday and engage in imaginative activities based on books, stories and songs.

So, set the stage for your children.  Grab their favorite book, a few props and bring it to life.  Every book you read with your child is a chance to become someone or something else and to develop the skills to become lifelong learners.

For Preschoolers

The Bears Upstairs: A Book of Creative Dramatics

Jane Belk Moncure, 2014

Part of The Magic Castle Readers series, this book introduces readers to creative dramatics through the adorable story of Kate, two bears and several chairs.  Join Kate and her bears as they set sail on the high seas, take a train, bump in a bus and eat some pears.  A charming book that is a great introduction to dramatics.


How to Be a Cat

Niki McClure, 2013

What is it like to be cat?  Get ready to learn as you follow big cat as she teaches little kitten how to stretch and pounce and lick.  Filled with clear, black and white cut paper illustrations and simple text, this book is an easy way to turn a simple story into a chance to play. 


Is Everyone Ready for Fun?

Jan Thomas, 2011

Are you ready?  Let’s do it!  Let’s jump on chicken’s sofa!  Oh, chicken doesn’t like that.  Okay, so what should we do now… we can’t jump, so let’s dance on chicken’s sofa!  This brightly colored picture book will have you jumping, dancing and wiggling your day away. 


For Early Elementary and Kids of All Ages

You are a Lion! And other fun Yoga poses

Taeeun Yoo, 2012.

Simple text and easy to follow illustrations lead readers through yoga poses, but it is yoga with a twist as each pose is a chance to become something amazing.  Can you be a lion?  Have you ever been a frog?  Can you frisk at night like a cat in a tree?  Can a child become a mountain?  Here is your chance to find out.  Namaste.


I’m the Best

Lucy Cousins, 2010.

Dog is the best!  He is the best at everything and he thinks that he is better than all of his friends.  He can run faster than Mole, can dig deeper than Goose, is bigger than Ladybug, and can swim better than Donkey.  But, Dog’s friends don’t think he is the best because they are the best at doing things too.  A clever book for friends to share and learn about what makes each of us the best.


The Day the Crayons Quit

Drew Daywalt, 2013

Duncan loves his crayons.  They brighten his world, but the world of the crayons is not as bright.  This clever book is filled with the voices of Duncan’s crayons who want nothing more than to be recognized for the work they do.  Red needs a rest, yellow and orange are at odds over who is the color of the sun, white feels empty and blue is overworked.  A great book for exploring multiple voices and emotions in a “colorful” way.