Preschool programs

Natural Colors

Books To Share

  • A Color of His Own by Leo Lionni.
  • Cool Chameleons! by Fay Robinson.
  • Leon the Chameleon by Melanie Watt.
  • They Thought They Saw Him by Craig Kee Strete.

Books To Show

  • A Beasty Story by Bill Martin, Jr.
  • Fabulous Fluttering Tropical Butterflies by Dorothy Hinshaw Patent.
  • The Prince of Butterflies by Bruce Coville.
  • What Color is Nature? by Stephen R. Swinburne.




Here are the redbirds, (wiggle your fingers)

Fa-la-la-la-la (sing song voice)

Here are the redbirds, (wiggle your fingers)

Watch them fly away. (move your hands away from your body)

Repeat with other birds, including blackbirds, bluebirds, yellowbirds, etc.

“Fireflies” in Too Many Rabbits and Other Fingerplays About Animals, Nature, Weather, and the Universe by Kay Cooper.

Puppet Stories

Tell A Color of His Own by Leo Lionni using the Science Concept kit available from Childcraft (# 3G431755 in the catalog). Each plush chameleon is sitting on a matching colored mat.

Tell the story “I Wish I Were a Butterfly” by James Howe using the Literacy Bag available from Childcraft (# 3G408150 in the catalog).

Draw and Tell Story

"Cecil, the Curious Cat" in Tell and Draw Stories by Margaret J. Olson.

Cut and Tell Story

“My Uncle, the Artist” in Fold and Cut Stories by Jerry J. Mallett and Timothy S. Ervin.


Green Grass Grew All Around

(Traditional. Lyrics and music are available online at or on page 16 of The Giant Book of Children’s Songs.)

There was a hole in the middle of the ground

The prettiest hole that you ever did see.

Well, the hole in the ground,

And the green grass grew all around and around

And the green grass grew all around.

And in this hole there was a root

The prettiest root that you ever did see.

Well, the root in the hole,

And the hole in the ground,

And the green grass grew all around and around

And the green grass grew all around.

And on this root there was tree

The prettiest tree that you ever did see.

(continue to add items to the list as you sing)

And on this tree there was a branch...

The prettiest branch that you ever did see.

And on this branch there was twig...

The prettiest twig that you ever did see.

And on this twig there was a nest...

The prettiest nest that you ever did see.

And in this nest there was an egg...

The prettiest egg that you ever did see.

And in this egg there was a bird...

The prettiest bird that you ever did see.

And on this bird there was a wing...

The prettiest wing that you ever did see.

And on this wing, there was a feather...

The prettiest feather that you ever did see.

Well, the feather on the wing,

And the wing on the bird,

And the bird on the egg,

And the egg in the nest,

And the nest on the twig,

And the twig on the branch,

And the branch on the tree,

And the tree on the root,

And the root in the hole,

And the hole in the ground,

And the green grass grew all around and around,

And the green grass grew all around.


My Chameleon

  • Chameleon pattern
  • Transparency film or other clear plastic sheets
  • Craft sticks
  • Scissors
  • A variety of colored papers with different textures, weights, patterns, etc.
  • Glue sticks
  • White paper

Use the pattern to cut out chameleons from clear plastic sheets, such as transparency film. Attach the chameleons to craft sticks. Give each child a sheet of white paper. Let them tear up pieces of paper and glue them to the white sheet. Distribute the clear chameleons and let the children see they change when moved across the paper. Encourage the children to hold their chameleon up to clothing, wallpaper, and other items.

Puzzle Trees

(Based on a craft in Every Day is Earth Day by Kathy Ross.)

  • Brown construction paper, one half of an 8 1/2” x 11” sheet
  • Blue construction paper, 8 1/2” x 11” sheet
  • Old puzzle pieces that are predominantly green, red, orange, yellow, beige, and brown
  • Scissors
  • White glue
  • Markers
  • Pencils

Let each child follow these directions to make a puzzle. Draw a tree shape with a trunk and branches on a piece of brown construction paper. Cut out the tree. Glue the tree to the blue construction paper. Arrange puzzle pieces on the tree branches to form leaves. When the child is satisfied with the arrangement, glue the pieces in place. If appropriate colors are not available, the child can turn the piece over and use markers to color the non-glossy side of the puzzle piece.

Games and Activities

Color Whirlers

Show how all of the colors camouflage within themselves by whirling colors together. Cut circles of cardboard; use a coffee mug as a template. Create color wheels by gluing colorful wrapping paper to circles of cardboard or by using markers to color geometric patterns on a circle. Punch two holes near the center of the circle and lace a piece of string through to create a loop. Tape the string to secure the closed loop. Twirl the colors by pulling tight on the string and then relaxing it, repeating several times.

Guest Speakers

Invite a herpetologist to bring in snakes, lizards, and other reptiles and talk about how they adapt to the environment.

Audio Recordings

  • "Foolish Frog" on Stories and Songs for Little Children by Pete Seeger.
  • "Metamorphosis" on Diamond in the Rough by Charlotte Diamond.
  • "Migratin'" on What Can One Little Person Do? by Sally Rogers. (Make felt bluebirds to use on a flannel board while singing this song.)


Note: Show one section of longer videos/DVDs as part of your program. For a storytime program, limit the film to 10-12 minutes. Display the other videos for parents and caregivers to check out.

  • “Frederick” on Five Lionni Classics. (5 minutes)
  • In the Small, Small Pond. (6 minutes)
  • The Magic School Bus Makes a Rainbow. (30 minutes)
  • Waiting for Wings. (6 minutes)

Web Sites

Animal Planet

USGS Kid’s Page


Texas Reading Club 2004 Programming Manual / Color Your World...Read!

Published by the Library Development Division of the Texas State Library and Archives Commission

Page last modified: June 14, 2011