Dreaming Up: A Celebration of Building
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Dreaming Up: A Celebration of Building

4.04 of 5 stars 4.04  ·  rating details  ·  199 ratings  ·  76 reviews
A collection of illustrations, concrete poetry, and photographs that shows how young children's constructions, created as they play, are reflected in notable works of architecture from around the world.
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published October 1st 2012 by Lee & Low Books (first published April 1st 1996)
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(showing 1-30 of 362)
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A children's book that combines architecture, poetry, and a global look at the world. The best nonfiction books nowadays provide multiple access points for different readers with different interests, and Dreaming Up is a stellar example of that approach. Short poems, featuring heavy meter and rhyme, are laid out alongside corresponding illustrations of children at play (wooden blocks, a pillow fort, sand castles). On the opposite page, iconic buildings from around the world (Wright's Fallingwate...more
Amy Musser
This concept book draws comparisons between structures built by children and buildings designed by famous architects. Each two page spread features an illustration on the left-hand side of children and a structure they have built from everyday objects: cardboard boxes, sofa cushions, blankets and chairs, blocks, Legos, and more. On the right side is a photograph of a building that corresponds in shape, color, material, or aesthetic. The illustrations depict a variety of skin and hair colors and...more
Stephanie Croaning
I judge books by their covers, and didn't feel I would be all that into this book celebrating building, but it really took me by surprise. Stunning! Fifteen different buildings are reviewed, from the Guggenheim to the Paper Tube School. Each school gets a two-page spread that features a photo of the building on one page and a poem and illustration of children at play on the other. The poems celebrate the architectural style and feel, while the illustration shows the architecture of the building...more
An amazing book to introduce children to how their building blocks, legos, tent blankets etc. relate to actual buildings. Very few words - excellent illustrations and photos. Additional information about the buildings referenced and their international architects are included in the back.
Through an innovative mix of illustrations and text, this celebration of children at play showcases how imaginative architects use a foundation of simple concepts and materials to create surprising and whimsical structures.

Each two-page spread consists of an illustration of children building and a concrete poem that describes their activity on the left; on the right is a photograph of a real-life structure that echoes the spirit of the illustration.

The narrative is supplemented by information a...more
The thought that went into this book amazes me. The book highlights some amazing architecture. What sets the book apart though, is that for every structure, there is a mixed media illustration of young children creating a similar structure with everyday materials such as stacking cubes, legos, mud or even the cardboard tubes from paper towel rolls. There is also a concrete poem that also speaks of the children's creations while it gives the reader another way to imagine or "see" the shapes that...more
Roberta Gibson

No matter what the materials are, children love to stack and build. The new picture book, Dreaming Up: A Celebration of Building by Christy Hale, is sure to help them reach to even greater heights.

Picture a lovely illustration of children building with different materials accompanied with a intriguing shape poem that describes what they are doing. Now turn the page and there is a full color photograph of a real building that mimics the ideas from the play version, bigger...more
Kristi Bernard
Do your young readers make forts out of pillows or build make believe houses from popsicle sticks or old cardboard boxes? If so, they will absolutely love what's in these pages. If you have young readers who have never tried building anything on their own, they will love all of the wonderful ideas presented here. Parents and teachers will love the rhyme that's introduced on every page. Young readers will love looking at the pictures of kids building with plastic stackable toys, cared board boxes...more
Angela Marie
Dreaming Up: A Celebration of Building by Christy Hale is a great informational picture book that compares the buildings that children create with blocks and other toys to great architectural structures. On the left side of the page it shows something that a child has created and on the right side it shows a photograph of an actual building that looks like the child's creation. My favorite page was the book described building a hideaway out of blankets and chairs becuase that is what I always...more
Jan 03, 2013 Valerie rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: pb
Imagine yourself as a child again, building with your favorite blocks. Were they wooden, balanced precariously or placed precisely? Was cardboard a favored construction material for you, or were you fond, perhaps, of Lego or other snap together pieces? Think back, just for a moment; remember the feeling you had as architect, as master builder, as creator of contained space. Then read Dreaming Up ,by Christy Hale and relive that feeling and much more.
Hale has not only captured the wonder of chil...more
A beautiful multicultural celebration of building, with structures created by children on the pages on the left coupled with real architectural buildings with similar characteristics on the pages on the right. A concrete poem is written for each with words arranged in the shape of the structure. Information about the architects of the buildings are in the back pages of the book and they are diverse as well. A beautiful book! For children 4 and up.
There aren't many good books on architecture for very young children, and this book fits the bill beautifully. On the left page is a drawing of kids playing and on the right page is an actual building reminiscent of that play. I've never seen the Sagrada Familia compared to a sand castle, but it works, and why not compare architecture to play? Building really does come naturally to children, after all :)
Allison Parker
This book bridges the worlds of a child's imaginative play with the work of modern architects. On the left page, the reader sees a collage, mix-media scene of children constructing, assembling, or creating something, from sand castles to pillow forts, always accompanied by a bit of poetry whose form beautifully reflects the children's work. Then on the right, the author presents a full-page photograph of a building, its image and construction uncannily similar to what the children are making. It...more
Using the techniques of rime, rhythm, concrete poetry and painting, Hale portrays children at play using sticks, building blocks, mud, sticks, cushions and blanket to build model buildings, sandcastles and playhouses for themselves on the verso pages of her picture book. Juxtaposed to these on the recto pages are color photographs of significant works of world architecture that reflect the techniques that the children are using. Next to the painting and poem of two children at the shore building...more
Laura Salas
What a cool concept! Hale takes different building activities for kids (cushion forts, Legos, building blocks, etc.) and describes each one in a poem. Then the right page of the spread has a photo of a real building/structure out in the world, designed by a noteworth architect, that uses the a related activity/process.

For instance, one spread shows kids building with Legos and has this poem:

One by one,
block by block,
plastic shapes

Yellow, red,
white, and black,
all connect
in a stack.

This book just hit me straight at the heart. As a kid I wanted to be an architech...I would play with Lego, look at floor plans of houses, and dream. I wasn't good at math and was told to be an architect you needed to be good at math...well now with CAD...who needs math but oh well. I have studies architecture on my own and love buildings.

This book takes major architecture around the world and puts it in child like terms. Cups can be stacked that the towers in Malaysia, Lego's can be like a hou...more
Melissa Mcavoy
Rhythmic text and an international point of view celebrate and inspire children’s love of construction. Typical children’s structures: sandcastles, pillow forts, are paired with actual buildings that mirror the children’s creations. Backmatter provides details about the buildings and their architects.
This is a really cool little book that, at first glance, might seem to be just for toddlers and preschoolers: the crowd that is usually stacking cups and boxes and what have you up as tall as themselves. But Hale takes it further: each spread has on one page a child or children building something creative out of some particular materials--and a nice multicultural approach here, urban/rural, etc. The facing page shows a real building made out of similar materials and having a similar shape. The a...more
Dreaming Up is a book capable of spanning a wide range of children's interest levels. I love the way the type graphics mirror the building styles. It'll be great inspiration for the next generation of builders and dreamers.
This is a case where form forgoes functionality--and unfortunately it diminishes readability. The poems mimic the shape and structure of the architecture. I wasn't sure in which order to read lines of the poem.
Uses concrete poetry to connect everyday play with structures around the world. The last few pages give more information about the buildings and the architects that designed them. Perfect nonfiction for young children.
What child hasn't dreamed of building a structure that reaches to the sky or even used blocks or plastic forms to try to see just how high the building can go? This inspiring book is sure to prompt young builders to try their hands at building while stretching their imaginations about how to build. The book contains photographs of 15 actual buildings alongside their child-inspired examples. The buildings rane from Maya Lin's Box House in Telluride, Colorado that looks exactly like its name to Fr...more
Nov 03, 2013 Martha rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Marti, Alice, Librariansteph, Elissa
Shelves: k-3-non-fiction
A wonderful introduction to architecture for young children. The pairing of a child's structure such as a cantilevered block building with an image of Frank Lloyd Wrights' "Fallingwater" on the opposite page, describe the concept of this famous house perfectly. The accompanying text is written in concrete poems mirroring the structures. The backmatter of mini biographies about the famous architects who designed the buildings, will provide resources for teachers, and parents to teach children abo...more
clever juxtapositions of children's building creations in various mediums with real famous architecture. Even the accompanying text mirrors the architecture designs.
Rebecca Plaza
I put this in NF because it has such good building info at the end. The big concept made for the smallest of us, toddlers and the building all children do.
This book, a "celebration of building", is one part picture book, one part collection of concrete poetry, and one part nonfiction book about architecture. On the left side of each spread is an illustration of a child (or children) building or creating with toys and materials like LEGOs, toothpicks, couch cushions, etc. Each illustration is accompanied by a concrete poem that takes the shape of the structure being built. On the right side of the spread is a photograph of an actual building or str...more
This is a really interesting book. Each double page spread features a poem on one side and a picture of a real building on the other. Each poem is written in a different format - and in different shapes, which is really cool. Illustrations of children building things using various materials accompany each poem, with the following photograph mirroring what the children have built.

At the end of the book, there is information about each real building and its architect, along with a quote from that...more
Dreaming Up! A Celebration of Building at first look appears to be a picture book but it hides so much more within its pages. Hale provides illustrations of children doing what they do best-using their imaginations through the process of play. One girl's mud-pie houses compares remarkably to an ancient Egyptian domed dwelling while two children's Tinker toy connected structured bear resemblance to Montreal's Biosphere. Was play like this the inspiration for some of the world's greatest architect...more
I loved this book with creative illustrations about pretending to build on the left hand page and a photo of an actual building on the right. There is so much to talk about and use for pretend play that repeated readings will spark new play ideas. Four pages of building and architect information are included at the at the end of the book for kids who want to know more. This could be a fun book to use in a classroom PreK-grade 3 during a buildings or home unit. Dreaming Up would make a great gif...more
Dreaming UP is a fusion of poetry, children's building styles, and famous archetecture. The photographs are stock, and the illustrations of children aren't particularly horrific, and the poetry seems to flow rather well. However, I feel the book targets k-2nd graders, and I don't think they would find it particuarly interesting. There's no storyline, and every set of pages stands individually. Though I do like the premise that children's buildings can develop into monumental archecture, the age...more
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