Elephants Can Paint, Too! (Anne Schwartz Books)

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9780689869853: Elephants Can Paint, Too! (Anne Schwartz Books)
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I teach in two schools. One is in the city. The other is in the jungle. Some of my students have hands. Others have trunks. Elephants live in Asia. They eat three hundred pounds of food a day. They spray water out of their trunks. Even so, they are a lot like you. They like to eat cookies and hang out with their friends. They even like to paint pictures. In this true story you'll learn about an amazing class of elephants that are taught to become artists by an amazing teacher.

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Review:

Art teacher Arnold, together with her artist husband, embarked on a project to support the diminishing number of Asian elephants. Traveling to Thailand, India and Cambodia, they trained 30 elephants to paint and supplied their keepers with materials and ideas to keep the project in place. Arnold recounts, in alternating text and photographs, the basics of teaching art to children and elephants, exploring similarities and differences between the two groups. Students use their hands while others work with their trunks; some like peanut butter and jelly, while others eat grass. But in art class both can express their talent by painting with dots, bright colors and strokes in their own style. Remarkably, the elephant paintings parallel the artwork of the children quite well, including one bouquet that is amazingly realistic. Additionally, Arnold intersperses some interesting facts about the elephant's natural behavior. Beautiful photography displaying children, elephants and artwork set in a well-designed layout of large multi-colored text, coupled with green boxes filled with facts in a bold black font, add to the book's unique subject matter and appeal. (Nonfiction. 6-9) (Kirkus Reviews)

About the Author:

Katya Arnold was born in Moscow and became an artist at age twelve. She has written and illustrated many books for children, including Baba Yaga: A Russian Folktale and Me Too!: Two Small Stories About Small Animals. She has also written two nonfiction books, Let's Find It!: My First Nature Guide and Katya's Book of Mushrooms, drawing on her passion for the natural world.
When she is not writing and illustrating, Ms. Arnold teaches art to children at Saint Ann's School in Brooklyn and to elephants in Thailand through the Asian Elephant Art and Conservation Project, an organization founded by her husband, the artist Alex Melamid. She lives in New York City with her family.

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