The Big Book of Pick And Draw Activities is compiled and illustrated by Rich Davis using letters he received from various educators describing the ways they adapted the Pick and Draw game for their situations. The Pick and Draw game is a set of cards from which you ‘pick’ one card from each category and draw a face with each of those features. The categories are: face, nose, eyes, mouth, and hair. The way that you choose to draw each particular feature is up to you as long as you stay within the general parameter of the picture. By doing this you can have a classroom or a family all see the same facial features and yet each person’s finished face will be unique. To try a sample hand of the Pick and Draw game, try it out by clicking here.
When I heard about the Big Book of Pick and Draw Activities and looked up the Pick and Draw website for more information I was intrigued. Pick and Draw sounded like such a fun game to play and I wanted to find out more. Rich sent a book my way and I dove right into it. I will admit a little time has gone by from then until now, but this has only been due to my excitement of wanting the full experience! After beginning the book and reading all the possibilities I had to stop and order our family a Pick and Draw game to try it out!
The activities within this book can help children in the areas of reading, writing, speaking, and listening. These are the fundamental building blocks of education and continued life-long learning and literacy. By getting a good grasp on these basics children will succeed in life. Not all children are enthusiastic about these topics; but many educators have been able to use the Pick and Draw game to ‘sneak’ in some learning while children are having fun and exploring their creative core. Literacy is very important, but it is also important to learn about our creative self.
The activities within this book are well-organised; each follows a basic template which makes them easy to read. The items needed for each are clearly stated at the start of each chapter, and the majority only require plain paper and a pencil in addition to the PAD game cards. This alone makes the PAD game and activities easy to transport and do anywhere, anytime! There are variations for some of the activities, and some contributors have included checklists/question lists to go along with their activities, and these are all included as well. There are contributor profiles written up so that you can understand their area of expertise in which the activity derived. The majority of the activities within this book may easily be used with one student or a large group of students. I say students, but the these activities can also be used in the work place during a team meeting or gathering for a bit of fun and to start the flow of creativity when trying to open the mind to new ideas.
The activities contained within the Big Book of Pick and Draw Activities range from designing educational posters, creating postcards (as well as writing to someone either real or imaginary), which can lead to lessons on geography and culture. There are activities for drawing cowboy caricatures, working on story characters, and writing stories in an hour. The Pick and Draw game can be used for child and teen grief councilling using the downloadable Doodle Cards. You can also use this game for students with autism and related orders by helping them become more flexible in their way of thinking. There is also a chapter dedicated to using PAD within youth groups and church group settings. And believe it or not there are even chapters for using PAD for art ed and creating 3D clay models.
Most of the activities in this book would be more appropriate for older children and teens, but many can also be used or adapted to younger children as well. As you can see, Kallista had a great time playing.
She’s not yet drawing recognisable faces, but she knows what she is drawing and gets right into the swing of the game!
I wish Pick and Draw would have been available during my teaching days in japan as there are definitely a few ways in which I would have been able to adapt this game with my students; both young and adult and had a laughing great time with us all learning something new.
If you are an educator (in a school, at home, in a youth group, etc) I would recommend The Big Book Pick and Draw Activities to you. The game is great on its own, but there are so many ways to expand on it that I’m sure you wouldn’t want to miss out on so why not give order The Big Book of Pick and Draw Activities at the same time? If you already have the Pick and Draw game, definitely order this book to expand the ways in which you can use the game.
If you would like to purchase your own set of Pick and Draw cards, or the Pick and Draw Big Book of Activities, you will find the link at the side of my blog. While you are there you can also see some of the beautiful children’s books Rich Davis has illustrated. Rich Davis travels to schools and libraries to draw with them. If you would like him to come visit your school or club, be sure to contact him.
I was especially interested in the first activity in The Big Book of Pick and Draw Activities, “Using Pick and Draw to Teach Talking, Drawing and Writing”. This chapter helps children learn about emotions. Most of the activities don’t require any additional items but there is a list of suggested children’s books to go with this one. So we made a special trip walking down to our village library. Only three from that list are available in this country and we are impatiently awaiting their arrival via inter-library loan so that we can put everything together and immerse ourselves in the full experience of Pick and Draw as well as The Big Book of Pick and Draw Activities. I will write another post on this activity to let you know how it goes.
Do you have your own Pick and Draw game? Please share your experiences with us!