I’m not sure what it is about this kid Duncan, but his crayons sure are a colorful bunch of characters! Having soothed the hurt feelings of one group who threatened to quit, Duncan now faces a whole new group of crayons asking to be rescued. From Maroon Crayon, who was lost beneath the sofa cushions and then broken in two after Dad sat on him; to poor Turquoise, whose head is now stuck to one of Duncan’s stinky socks after they both ended up in the dryer together; to Pea Green, who knows darn well that no kid likes peas and who ran away—each and every crayon has a woeful tale to tell and a plea to be brought home to the crayon box.
Warm up activity. Create a mural using the crayons in non traditional ways. Encourage students to make the clouds purple and the sun blue! Let black do something other than outline!
Using the Balloon Debate is an excellent way to engage students as they learn to support their claim with evidence. In The Day the Crayons Came Home, did the crayons have a right to feel neglected? Should Duncan have been more responsible for his crayons? Which crayon do you think has the best What evidence do you have to support your statement?
Imagine a hot air balloon debate is coming down. In order to save yourself, others will need to be thrown overboard. Break the students into groups of six or eight. Each student will represent a crayon of their choice. Each student must support the why they should be saved. They will be given one minute to support their claim statement the reasons they should be saved as well as the impact they will have of they are saved. If they are thrown overboard their contribution to humanity goes with them. After each student speaks they have thirty seconds to refute the crayon statements made by other students. The audience or other teachers can evaluate the relative cases and vote the crayons off the balloons group by group. If you choose, students remaining on balloons will be put on a final balloon ride together. The must convincing crayon of the final balloon ride can be declared a winner. This activity can be done with book characters, scientists, inventors, writers, artists, musicians, philosophers, public services or anything else which links to your curriculum.
Watch in the video below how a middle school student refuted other members of his hot air balloon.