Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Chameleon's Colors is written by Chisato Tashiro from Japan and translated by Marianne Martens. This is the perfect book for building community. Chameleon doesn't like changing colors. His friends never see him because he always blends right in. They will walk right past or even step on him because chameleons change color with their surroundings. What a great way to introduce camouflage to our youngest learners. Chameleon's friend Hippo is tired of being one dull color and wishes he could change colors like Chameleon. Chameleon is creative and decides to mash up pink flowers and make Hippo pink, which makes Hippo very happy. That night, Chameleon is inspired to create a paint shop of sorts by filling coconut shells with lots of different colors and in the morning announces... "Chameleon's Colors! Bear or Flea - tell me what color you want to be!" All different kinds of animals come to see Chameleon and change their colors. The animals are happy being different and Chameleon is happy being so popular. Until, hunting for food becomes difficult for the jungle because the animals can't find their normal predators. They can't find the animals they normally eat and the animals can't hide for safety, jungle life gets confusing. The animals get angry with Chameleon and chase after him. The ending is perfect and sends a message about being yourself, for the entire jungle. I think this book is perfect for our youngest readers but also a quick powerful message for our oldest readers too. It would also make a great companion book with a nonfiction piece about chameleons. The illustrations are bright and colorful. The book doesn't indicated the medium used but I feel it was done using paint with some crayon or pastel resistance. Something our children would love to do.