Logo Title Quebec Reading Connection

Draw!

Colón, Raúl (Author/Illustrator)
Simon & Schuster 2014. 36 pages
First published: 2014
ISBN: 9781442494923 (hardcover)
9781442494930 (e-book)
Original language: English
Book type: Picture Book

Text Elements:

character, point of view, setting

Reading Range

 
Cycle
Elementary
Secondary
 
1
2
3
1
2
ELA
K
1
2
3
4
5
6
1
2
3
4
5
ESL
1
2
3
4
5
6
1
2
3
4
5
ESL Intensive & Enriched
5
6
1
2
3
4
5

Description:

It starts with a sketch of a boy on his bed, drawing. A pith helmet and book about Africa are nearby. An inhaler and medication on the bedside table suggest a quiet life.

In this wordless story, the boy’s drawings fill the large pages with realistic images of soft-edged forms that seem to glow with hot sunlight. Subtle layers of colour are scraped through, creating the hippo’s rough skin, delineating puffs of cloud and dust, marking the flow of the lion’s mane.

The boy befriends an ibis and elephant. He visits zebras and giraffes. He shares his sandwich with gorillas, while drawing everyone he meets. Young readers needn’t be avid artists themselves to recognize the total engagement a beloved activity brings. In one sequence the boy makes a head-on sketch of a charging rhino, before scampering up a tree, pencils flying. (The rhino settles down when the boy shows him the drawing.)

On his return to a faded, sketchy reality, we see the boy showing his work to classmates. His own body now reflects the soft glow of his drawings—a wordless appeal for young readers to share their own colourful worlds, for the benefit of everyone.

  •  Look at the first few pages and discuss how the boy is inspired to draw. What places are you inspired by? Where do you “visit” in your imagination, based on your favourite books?
  •  

    What details in the illustrations, such as facial expressions and setting, help you make sense of this wordless story? Discuss your inferences based on these details.

  •  What items does the boy bring with him in his bag? Draw and write about what you would bring with you on a similar adventure.
  •  Create and record an audio script that would describe Raul’s safari. Add sounds of the jungle to your podcast.
  •  

    On a picture walk, discuss the setting, main character and animals.

  •  

    Read the author’s note. Using teacher-recommended resources, research and compare impressionist, surrealist and contemporary styles of art. From the information gathered, which would you consider Raul Colon’s work to be? What makes you say so?

  •  Create and record an audio script that would describe Raul’s safari. Add sounds of the jungle to your podcast.
  •  Discuss the art and the artists that you like. Do you like to draw? Read the author’s note on the last page and list the materials an artist needs for making illustrations. Which medium do you prefer: photography, collage, painting or sketching? Some other medium?
  •  On the last page, imagine what the boy is saying to the class. Compare your text with that of a partner.
  •  Using teacher-suggested drawing software programs, learn to draw some favourite things. Write a caption for each drawing. Compile the illustrations into a booklet. (Core)
  •  Imagine you are the boy in the book. Write a postcard about your safari. Describe what you saw, what happened to you and what you drew. (EESL)
  • To construct his/her identity
  • To use creativity
  • To use information
  • Environmental Awareness and Consumer Rights and Responsibilities
  • Geography, History and Citizenship
  • Social Sciences
  • Visual Arts