For the last month, we have been studying all about Chris van Allsburg.  We learned some great information about him.  Did you know that he didn’t even start getting into art until he decided he wanted to be an architect in high school?  Another interesting fact is that his brother-in-law David had a bull terrier named Winston.  Chris van Allsburg used that dog as a model for a dog named Fritz in his first book, The Garden of Abdul Gasazi.  After that, van Allsburg found a way to fit Fritz into every book he wrote!  So anytime you look through a Chris van Allsburg book, search for Fritz!

As part of our author study, students had to choose a Chris van Allsburg story and create their own picture book.  Each book had to include the plot, setting, characters, problem, solution, and an about the author section.  Students also had to include pictures in the same style that Chris van Allsburg used in his book.  They turned out amazing!  Here are a few examples:

This week students have had an opportunity to share their story retellings in class.  They’ve done a wonderful job of showing they understand the important story elements involved in each van Allsburg book.  Enjoy a slideshow of the students sharing their stories.  A special thanks to our digital chief this week, Ariel, for taking some wonderful pictures!

Great job everyone!  I know Chris van Allsburg would be proud!

*What did you learn about Chris van Allsburg?*

*What Chris van Allsburg book had your favorite illustrations?*

*What was your favorite part in the book you chose?*