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PreSchool-Grade 4-"Play is learning; learning is play" and play readers will, with these 138 ideas/recipes for stimulating make-believe or dramatic play. The activities are open-ended, allowing for creative responses from participants. The directions include lists of supplies and the activities will appeal to children of varying abilities. Many ideas involve new uses of familiar materials; others are tried-and-trues with intriguing variations. A chapter entitled "Storybook Make-Believe" offers more than 20 activities related to popular children's books, e.g., a "Hungry Sock Puppet" to go with Eric Carle's The Very Hungry Caterpillar (Philomel, 1969). While the stories are primarily older classics, the ideas can effectively be paired with newer books. Each activity has prominently displayed icons indicating the degree of difficulty of the craft, accessibility of materials, and the medium used, e.g., paint, scissors, cooking, etc. There are many books of crafts or theater games for young people, but most of them concentrate on skill building or curriculum themes. The excitement in this book about creative play with no planned outcome and the wide variety of activities, combined with the ease of use, make this a prime choice.
Cris Riedel, Ellis B. Hyde Elementary School, Dansville, NY
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Award-winning author MaryAnn F. Kohl has written 14 books for Gryphon House, and is a regular featured columnist for Parenting Magazine. She has written the best-selling favorites Preschool Art, The Big Messy Art Book, Making Make-Believe, MathArts, and First Art. She is co-author of Global Art and Cooking Art with Jean Potter. MaryAnn lives in Bellingham, Washington.