The Day The Crayons Quit, by Drew Daywalt, is an adorable picture book for elementary or primary school students. One day, Duncan receives some mysterious postcards – from his fed up crayons! The crayons are tired of being pigeonholed by their colours, and want to be more appreciated for all the pictures they could create – if Duncan is willing to be more creative.

If you don’t have a copy, or can’t borrow one from your local public library, you can buy one or listen to it being read aloud on YouTube:

Read the book together, or listen to a reading, and then discuss the story. How did the crayons feel? What was the problem? How were the crayons trying to solve their problem? Was the solution effective? What did Duncan do to help his crayons? What would you do, if you were Duncan?

There are lots of supporting resources, which you can google, as this is a very popular picture book. (Plus, who doesn’t love crayons?) Here are some of my favourite free resources:

After you’ve discussed the book, you could do a book review. You could think about how you would persuade the crayons not to quit, and write to one or more of the crayons. You could think about other school supplies – could your pens and glue sticks be equally fed up of doing the same jobs everyday? You could make some crayon themed artwork. You could even do your own crazy colour picture, with purple grass, orange clouds, pink sun, or rainbow birds!

To extend the crayon theme, find out how crayons are made. (There’s some fab videos on YouTube.) Try making your own crayons, by melting down old crayons chunks in muffin tins or silicon cases.

Work off any fidgets with a grand colour hunt; see how many objects you can find – indoors or outdoors – for each colour. Red apples, yellow bananas, green grass, blue flowers, brown bark, grey stones, and so on. Do you think any of those objects would suit different colours? I bet Duncan’s crayons would say every colour can look fantastic!

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