Saturday, July 23, 2016

Summer Reading Fun: Not Your Typical Dragon

This cute book is one that came to us through the Imagination Library. It's actually comes in handy as a way to help my kids understand when we see someone in a store or somewhere who is different than us. In the book a little dragon named Crispin has a birthday, making him old enough to breathe fire. Unfortunately, when he opens his mouth, fire does not come out. He tries everything he can to be a "real" dragon, but ends up breathing out funny things like beach balls and whipped cream. In the end he has to learn to love himself for who is is, and find a way to use his differences to bless those around him.
The story begins and ends with the dragon Crispin's birthday parties, so for our play dough time I made my usual play dough recipe, and added in a bit of vanilla to make it smell yummy (although I don't think any of the kids noticed the smell, if they did they didn't say anything). I gave the kids cupcake papers and birthday candles, some beads for "sprinkles", and a few utensils from my kids' play kitchen. We did this during last year's library reading program and it was such a favorite that the kids had been asking to do it again all summer.
I forgot to bring my camera with me this week, so I didn't get any pictures of our fun. This picture came from, and they have several more GREAT play dough ideas and lots of other family friendly content, you should definitely check it out!
For our sensory play the kids enjoyed some shaving cream free play, reminiscent of the whipped cream Crispin breathes out on his first attempt at fire breathing.

For our craft we followed Crispin to fire breathing practice. We did straw painting with yellow and red paint, which also brought some color mixing into the fun. I used tempera paints that I watered down enough to be able to squirt them with a syringe. It was so easy to fill the syringe and squirt a little of each color onto the child's paper. Then all they had to do was use their straw to blow the paint around. Erik's (on the left) is what it looks like if you only blow on the paint with the straw. Sharli's (on the right) ended up being more finger painting than straw painting, but oh well.

I found some beach balls at the dollar store, so we blew up a half a dozen of those for the kids to kick around for their outside gross motor play time. I'm not sure who got more of a work out, the adults who blew up the balls, or the kids who played with them. ;)

*Diedre Mower is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to This post contains affiliate links.

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