I don’t know about you, but I was REALLY ready for spring this year! As a result, I’ve been sharing picture books about spring with many of my classes, and we’ve been celebrating in our makerspace and STEAM lab with related activities. This week I used some springtime books that feature paper collage illustrations (I’m a huge fan of this type of art) and that inspired some paper cutting projects in my library:
Finding Spring by Carin Berger
It was love at first sight as soon as I laid eyes on this gorgeously constructed story of a little bear who can’t wait to experience his first spring. The soft collage illustrations have a slightly vintage feel, and it’s easy to empathize with Maurice’s impatient yearning for spring. And don’t miss Berger’s other cut-paper books, including Friends Forever which explores friendship in the context of changing seasons, and A Perfect Day which celebrates one magical snowy day in winter.
(Note: Be sure to visit Carin Berger’s website; the splash page is delightfully clever!)
Sorting Through Spring by Lizann Flatt, illustrations by Ashley Barron
This book is part of the Math in Nature Series by this author/illustrator duo, and it features a full measure of onomatopoeia, rhythm, rhyme, and whimsical questions about animals and nature on every page. The math concepts covered include patterns, graphs, and probability, and the author has also included Nature Notes on the animals featured in the text.
I included some math cards based on these pages in my STEAM Lab, and students used manipulatives to recreate and solve them. You may also be interested in the Sorting Through Spring teacher guide.
In the Small Small Pond written and illustrated by Denise Fleming
In the Tall Tall Grass written and illustrated by Denise Fleming
These books take collage art to a whole new level, in that Fleming makes her own paper that she then uses to create her illustrations. There are plenty of spring pond and meadow animals to inspire young artists to depict their own colorful scenes, and wide variety of descriptive rhyming verbs on each double page spread to move the action along from early morning to late at night.
I wasn’t ambitious enough to try making paper with my classes, but I stocked my Creation Station with construction paper, scissors, glue sticks, crayons, and extra copies of these books. Here are some of the spring collages my 2nd grade students created:
Can you recommend some other spring books using collage art? Please share them in the comments, or tweet me @LibraryLoriJune