I screamed in surprise when I saw a copy of Yellow Ball while rummaging through a dusty box in my favorite used bookstore. Why wouldn’t I? It was one of four books in Before Five in a Row’s book list that I (or should I say, my kids) did not yet have. Out of print, it is being sold at Amazon for $45 up. And the tag said 49 pesos – just a little over a dollar. I screamed again. (Wouldn’t you have shouted at such a find?)
Yellow Ball is about a beach ball that floats out to sea, tossed by the waves, forgotten, until it finds its way back to a child’s arms along the shore. With just one to two words per page, the story is in the high quality illustration of Caldecott winner Molly Bang.
As the ball goes on its adventure, it is seen from several views: below, above, near, far. The images provide a simple, yet powerful way to introduce the concept that things look differently from various sides and angles.
By pointing it out and making children aware of this, we are also working on their problem-solving skills. Sometimes, things, people, and problems, may not be what they seem and need to be examined from another point of view.
Using a Camera to Practice Perspective
To practice this idea of perspective, I handed Little T our simple digital camera and tasked her to take pictures of her beach ball from different places – far, near, high, low – and asked her how the ball looked like.
|Near and big|
|A bit smaller|
|Far and small|
|Can hardly see the ball|