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Chalk

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4.19  ·  Rating Details ·  4,719 Ratings  ·  759 Reviews
Three children discover a magical bag of chalk on a rainy day
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published March 1st 2010 by Marshall Cavendish Children's Books
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D'Anne I am assuming your question has to do with the very realistic nature of this book and that you stopped reading after you got to the pictures of the…moreI am assuming your question has to do with the very realistic nature of this book and that you stopped reading after you got to the pictures of the children's faces frozen in abject horror as the t-rex approaches. You're right, they do need help! I don't want to spoil it, but let's just say things end very very badly for everyone. (less)

Community Reviews

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Reader
Dec 01, 2010 Reader rated it it was amazing
Chalk is wordless storytelling at its best. A trio of kids happen upon a bag of chalk left unattended in a playground. They discover that things they draw come to life. The situation gets complicated when a boy draws a T-Rex and it begins to chase them. But the chalk that got them into trouble also gets them out of it. Thomson's photorealistic artwork is all kinds of amazing - vivid, precise, at times almost eerie in its level of realism. - T
Lisa Vegan
Dec 17, 2010 Lisa Vegan rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: boys & girls who love dinosaurs and/or making art; kids who are not easily frightened
What a unique and interesting book. The art style is so different. A part of me wasn’t a fan, but I was wowed anyway. The pictures are so realistic, vivid, vibrant, colorful, and creative.

The story, told all via the pictures (this is a wordless picture book) of three children who draw things on the sidewalk with chalk, things that come to life, will be fun for many kids. The dinosaur is really scary though in some of the illustrations. I can see some very young or sensitive kids being scared of
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Mary Ann
A young girl asked me the other day, "But is it real?" Young kids are working hard to figure out what belongs to the world of just pretend and what belongs to the "real world". We want to help them make those distinctions, and yet ... and yet... Don't we also want to help them see the magic of our imaginations, the magic in our own real worlds? Chalk, by Bill Thomson, is an amazing wordless book that embraces and celebrates kids' imaginations in a very real way. It's one of my standout books of ...more
paula
WOW. A masterpiece of photorealistic art, and a clever wordless story to boot. On a rainy day, three friends find a bag of sidewalk chalk. One girl draws a sun, and the sun comes out, leading them to realize that the things they draw come to life. The boy draws a dinosaur - as boys do - and the kids run screaming into a hiding place, where the boy, in a brainstorm, draws a raincloud, which dissolves the dino, and the drawings, and the kids put their raincoats on and walk home.

As storytelling goe
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Jess Brown
This incredibly-illustrated wordless picture book is sure to delight! Most of the time I was reading it, my mouth was gaping open. On a rainy day, three children begin to draw with some sidewalk chalk. As they draw, their images come to life: a sun, butterflies, and a dinosaur (scary!), who eventually washes away when the clever little boy draws a rain cloud inside the playground. The children leave behind their bag of chalk, sure to be found and imagined with by another group of kids. Just an a ...more
Randie D. Camp, M.S.
UPDATE: My son is constantly checking this out from the library, he loves it! We like to make up our own stories about other magical chalk drawings. Such a great book!
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BRILLIANT! Three kids venture to the park on a rainy day. They find a bag of chalk and unbelievable things begin to happen.

I absolutely love this book because it makes something as ordinary as chalk and transforms it into something incredible. Children have the power to do this with th
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Inge
Nov 16, 2010 Inge rated it really liked it
Shelves: kids
A very David Wiesner-esque offering. A wordless tale where a plastic T-rex presents magic chalk to a group of children. Whatever the children draw comes to life: butterflies, the sun, and then a terrifying all-too-real T-Rex. A quick thinking child draws some rain clouds and the rain melts the dinosaur in a sort of Wicked Witch of the West type manner.
The plastic dinosaur is reminiscent of Disney's Toy Story, while the rest of the illustrations are so realistic, they seem like photographs.
An 11
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Tom Franklin
Jun 14, 2010 Tom Franklin rated it it was amazing
One of the biggest challenges for a picture book author/illustrator is to come up with a compelling story that can deeply involve the reader without using words. Think of David Wiesner's Tuesday and Flotsam -- two great stories with pictures so rich and detailed that words are truly unnecessary.

Bill Thompson brings the same level of artistic skill to Chalk. After reading it, I wanted to re-read it to get a better idea of exactly how Thompson carried off such a rich story in so few pages and wit
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Emilyn
Dec 14, 2010 Emilyn rated it it was amazing
This is a picture book with no words telling the story of three children who find some chalk in a bag at a playground. The drawings they make with the chalk come to life (a sun, butterflies, a dinosaur). They then have to deal with the results of the drawings. The illustrations in this book are wonderful. There was absolutely no question in my mind the story the artist is trying to tell with the illustrations.
Karen Arendt
Aug 04, 2011 Karen Arendt rated it it was amazing
Wow! I heard about this book at Peggy Sharp's workshop and had to see the whole story for myself. The detail in the illustrations is amazing! Especially the sideways look the boys has before he draws with the chalk. Three children are walking on a rainy day to the park and find a bag hanging on a dinosaur statue. They use the chalk and realize it is magic chalk. I love the ending, especially, again, the glance of the boy, this time a backwards glance!
Carrie
Dec 16, 2010 Carrie rated it it was amazing
How could I not give anything less than 5 stars?! An amazing wordless picture book that depicted a wonderful story on a rainy day at a playground. How many of us wish that something like chalk could bring our pictures to life (other than in Mary Poppins). I had a good laugh when it was the boy who chose to draw a dangerous creature. :) Loved, loved, loved this book and it will be an incredible addition to my library of read-alouds.
Loren
Mar 20, 2010 Loren rated it it was amazing
Wow, look for this to be among the Caldecott buzz next Jan. What an amazingly illustrated book!!! The pictures are so life-like and almost startling. The butterfly page was a hit in our house! The concept is similar to Floatsom and other related wordless picture books even so I still enjoy the simplistic beauty of this book. The ending reminds me of Jumanji (Sp?) "who will pick up the story next?"
Kayla
Apr 29, 2010 Kayla rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-books
Another really interesting picture book with no text. I am beginning to grow fond of these kinds of books. I love how it allows children to infer what they think is going to happen in the story, and that children who have trouble reading or can't read at all can still enjoy the book.
Liza
Feb 16, 2012 Liza rated it it was amazing
The illustrations in this book are incredible and tell the story without words. Bill Thomson has drawn very detailed images, without using photographs or digital trickery. This book would make a great children's gift accompanied by a set of sidewalk chalk!
Alyson (Kid Lit Frenzy)
If I were selecting the 2011 Caldecott book this would be my top selection. It is amazing. Can't wait to use it with students.
Jamie Forrest
Oct 31, 2010 Jamie Forrest rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
I've never read a wordless book before! The ideas for use in the classroom are just rolling! This book is stunning!
Huawei
Apr 08, 2017 Huawei rated it it was amazing
Summary: In a raining day, 3 kids find a bag in a park, and many magic chalks are in this bag. A girl use a magic chalk to draw a sun, then this sun go up to sky, and rain is stopped. The other girl draw many butterflies, and butterflies became truly to fly in the sky. Oh, no! The boy uses magic chalk to draw a dinosaur.
Opinion: I like this story because the story is about magic. The kids can use magic chalk to draw everything, the these everything will become happening. Ex: in 5th opening a gi
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Madison
Mar 25, 2015 Madison rated it it was amazing
The story begins with these kids who find a piece of chalk outside and this chalk is one of a kind. It has a magic touch that brings everything to life.The simple doodles and sketches that the kids draw with the sidewalk chalk becomes these vivid 3D images. My favorite page from this book was when the little girl draws some sketches of butterflies and the butterflies somewhat started to appear. On the next page, magnificent gigantic monarch butterflies began to take over the page. The image take ...more
Jimmy Reyes
Sep 16, 2014 Jimmy Reyes rated it it was amazing
A visit to the neighborhood playground on this rainy afternoon does not deter three friends from having a good time and using their imagination with a bag of crayons they find on the Tyrannosaurus rex. With a bag of chalk in hand each child takes turns drawing on the blacktop as the bright sun and beautiful butterflies they imagine are no longer just a drawing beneath them but actual real-life images. Each picture is wonderfully crafted from various points of view and immerses the reader with th ...more
Karen
Oct 05, 2011 Karen rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Chalk, a wordless picture book, by Bill Thomson is a creative and colorful selection. Thomson’s illustrations are bright and detailed images. Each page is drawn by hand using paint and colored pencils. Each detail is pronounced and the images look like photographs. The characters have realistic facial expressions that enhance the story. In the story, each drawing comes to life becoming part of an easily understood story line without the use of words.

Readers can clearly see what the characters
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Allison
Mar 18, 2010 Allison rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Thomson, Bill Chalk 40 pages, Marshall Cavendish Children's Books; Language~G, Sexual Content~G; Violence~G

On a rainy day a group of children come across a bag of chalk. One child decides to use it and draws a sun. Magically, the sun immediately appears. The children then realize that this is magic chalk. Each child takes a turn and their drawings come to life as well! This is fantastic until one child decides to draw a dinosaur with sharp teeth. All of a sudden the children are running for thei
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Toby
Dec 13, 2010 Toby rated it it was amazing
My first choice this year for innovative illustrations that look computer-generated, but aren't, and that invite us to suspend disbelief in the manner of a classic fantasy - starting in the real world, and this world is hyper-real, until the chalk provides entry into the fantasy world. I found the book mysterious and suspenseful, right up to the successful resolution. And while others make the obvious connection to Jumanji, my first text-to-text connection was with Sylvester and the Magic Pebble ...more
Ubalstecha
Three children find a bag of chalk at the playground. Little do they know that the chalk is magical and what they draw comes to life. Unfortunate consequences occur when one of the children decides to draw a dinosaur. Can they escape being eaten?

This is a beautiful picture book, with photo-realistic illustrations and not one word of text. The whole story is told through the pictures, allowing parents to enter into a conversation with their children. Teachers will also love this book, as it provi
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Kristen
Oh, Bill Thomson, your photo-realistic art gets me every time. This is a gorgeous wordless picture book. I love that the illustrations fill the entire spread - for group read-alouds or one-on-one, readers feel like they're falling into the scene. Thomson's chalk takes Harold's purple crayon to the next level. Whatever is drawn, comes to life. So, if a kid draws a dinosaur...

Wordless books are especially good for readers learning English as a second language. The story can be in whatever words th
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Tobinsfavorite
Jun 30, 2010 Tobinsfavorite rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: kids and people who like pictures
(Really, if I type "Chalk" into the search box, I shouldn't get dozens of titles before "Chalk"! Even when I changed my search parameter to "Amazon", because the book is so new, it was 9th, after 6 volumes of Redwall and some other books that aren't called "Chalk". Only one of those even had "chalk" in the title.)

But I digress.

This book is the best wordless picture book I have read in a long time, if not ever. The art is great. The story is compelling. The children are believable. Most of those
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David
Oct 05, 2010 David rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picturebooks
Chalk by Bill Thomson (Goodreads Author)
Three children discover a magical bag of chalk on a rainy day. (Goodreads Summary)

This clever, magical wordless book is wonderful! It illustrates the old saying: Be careful what you wish for. Danger is averted by a fast thinking child. As in Jumanji, one hopes the next children to try the chalk are as quick thinking as these. A contender for the Caldecott and For ages 4 - 6, and all who love great illustration and excellent wordless picturebooks.
Joy
Oct 09, 2010 Joy rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens
Chalk is a deceptively simple little story. Three children find magic chalk and use it to turn their rainy day into something extraordinary. I am growing to love wordless picture books. The illustrations are so realistic, vivid and beautiful, they truly bring the story to life without the need of words. The expressions on the children's faces, from manic glee to sheer terror, convey everything and allow young readers to place themselves in the story. I loved it.
Honesty
Apr 08, 2017 Honesty rated it liked it
In Chalk there is a group of children walking into a playground/park area as it is raining. They find a gift bag is being displayed by a T-Rex seesaw toy.( I find this is a literary element, it is foreshadowing.) The bag has chalk and the children draw a sun and the rain goes away, then they draw butterflies and the start popping up out of the ground. In my opinion it was pretty good for being a wordless picturebook. I feel like i know more of the story when there are words. The formatting of th ...more
Nancy Kotkin
Story: 3 stars
Illustrations: 5 stars

Wordless picture book in the magical realism genre, similar to Fossil which is also by this same creator. Three friends stumble upon a bag of chalk hanging off a playground ride. When they draw things on the ground using the chalk, the pictures they make come to life. (view spoiler)
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Jon(athan) Nakapalau
Apr 14, 2017 Jon(athan) Nakapalau rated it it was amazing
Like an episode from The Twilight Zone! Chalk pictures come alive...do you think you should have drawn something besides a T-Rex!
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Bill Thomson lives in Southington, Connecticut with his wife, Diann, and their three sons, Billy, Nik, and Ethan. Bill has illustrated Karate Hour, Building With Dad, Baseball Hour, and Soccer Hour, all written by Carol Nevius. Bill's also created the wordless books, CHALK, FOSSIL, and THE TYPEWRITER. Bill is a Professor of Illustration at the Hartford Art School at the University of Hartford.

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