After a morning reading of Robert Munsch’s Purple, Green, and Yellow, the kids were thrilled when I pulled out some yummy-smelling markers and told them we were going to “draw on our bodies!”
To my surprise, their excitement didn’t damper when I rolled out a big sheet of paper and told them that first we needed to trace our bodies onto the paper so we could make body drawings.
Purple, Green, and Yellow is a fun, rhythmic book about a little artist, Brigid, who convinces her mom to first buy her washable markers, and then smelling markers, and then permanent markers – and then makes the completely relatable decision to draw all over her body with her markers!
Almost every time we do an activity with markers, we have at least one child who just can’t help but colour on themselves just a little bit, so my group very much enjoyed living vicariously through Brigid and I knew they would jump at the chance to make their own life-sized body drawings.
Materials to Make Body Drawings
You can also use a pencil to make the outlines, but I lived a bit dangerously with this one and outlined the children with one of the markers.
After each child had their outline traced, I cut their outline from the roll and had them each set to work finding small objects to hold down the corners so that we could all get started “drawing on our bodies” at the same time.
With slightly older children, you could encourage them to trace each other’s bodies.
At first the children just gleefully enjoyed the process of scribbling all over their (paper) bodies, but eventually facial features and patterns began to form.
And, of course, we had to smell each marker that we used.
And there was the inevitably scribble or two on our actual bodies, but we just made light of it (“I’m glad you didn’t use the super indelible, never-come-off-until-you’re-dead-and-maybe-even-later colouring markers!”) and redirected to drawing on our paper bodies.
This was a great vocabulary and anatomy activity, too, as I asked lots of questions and had the children point out different body parts on their paper versions of themselves.
The older girls really enjoyed learning that the “corners” of their bodies (elbows, shoulders, and knees) are actually “joints.” We organically discovered that joints are body parts that allow us to bend and move. With older children it might be fun to try to draw in organs, like Asia did with S over on Fun at Home With Kids.
If your children are skilled at scissor use, you can have them cut out their outlines after drawing (to avoid any stray marker strokes from getting on the floor or table). We didn’t, just to prevent the possibility of the outlines getting ripped after all of that hard work!
Have your children read any Robert Munsch books?
Purple, Green, and Yellow definitely is a favourite around here – and we loved this activity, too! Would you let your children “draw on themselves?”
PS – my crazy friend Susie let her kids use paint for this activity… near her white couch. (I’m sticking to scented markers!)
Although we don’t have an official Virtual Book Club for Kids’ Selection this month, a few of my co-hosts and I still wanted to share a post today – check out their book-inspired posts below: