Dancing Through Fields of Color
Do you have a child that inspires to be an artist? Author, Elizabeth Brown and illustrator Aimee Sicuro beautifully tell the story of Helen Frankenthaler. Dancing Through Field of Colors tells the story of this iconic woman who changed the world of art. The story begins with Helen as a young child “who colored her reds, blues, and yellows any which way she chose”. Helen never wanted to follow the rules and wished for the opportunity to express herself through art the way she chose. The story continues with Helen’s hardships of losing her father and how her art helped her heal. In the end, she discovers how to truly express herself through the method of “pour-paint”.
Reading and Language Tips
Included in this beautiful book is a short biography about Helen with a detailed timeline of her life. Also included is a poured paint/soak – stain activity for children to enjoy! This book is full of many opportunities for language and learning tips. What I loved most about this book was the effortless marriage between the text and illustration. Each page is a piece of artwork!
There are tons of new vocabulary words that a child can learn when reading such as marvel, swirl, cascade, ripple and vermillion. As you are reading, stop to define specific words that are unknown to your child. Discuss Helen’s feelings throughout the book. How did Helen feel when she couldn’t paint what she wanted to paint? Helen felt ____ after her father died. How did Helen feel when she was at the beach in Nova Scotia? Helen’s life is a journey of ups and downs. She was not just an iconic artist, she was also a woman who broke free of what society expected of her and broke all rules. That is when she truly felt free! A true inspiration for all young children, both boys and girls.
Are you a teacher? Check out this Frankenthaler lesson plan by Crayola!
To learn more about Helen Frankenthaler, check out her foundation here.
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