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Mouse Paint

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Perfect for fans of Lois Ehlert and Press Here, this charming board book gently explores the world of color and celebrates the joy of creativity.

One day three white mice discover three jars of paint--red, blue, and yellow. But what happens when they splash in the colors, mixing the red and blue? Or dance in the blue and yellow? This playful introduction to colors will appeal to any budding artist or curious preschooler.

32 pages, Board Book

First published January 1, 1989

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About the author

Ellen Stoll Walsh

23 books28 followers
Ellen is the daughter of Joseph Adolphus (a businessman) and Nell (Orum) Stoll; married David Albert Walsh (a professor), August 25, 1964; children: Benjamin Martin. She was educated at Maryland Institute of Art, B.F.A., 1964; attended University of Minnesota, 1966-69.
She lives in upstate New York.

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5 stars
7,478 (47%)
4 stars
4,537 (28%)
3 stars
3,083 (19%)
2 stars
567 (3%)
1 star
191 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 641 reviews
Profile Image for Mir.
4,778 reviews4,983 followers
February 17, 2019
Cute and effectively illustrated introduction to color mixing. Not much story.

There is a misleading introduction at the start of a cat, suggesting that it will present some threat or action which never takes place. I guess Walsh doesn't know her Chekov.
Profile Image for midnightfaerie.
1,907 reviews118 followers
June 17, 2013
Our second Ellen Stoll Walsh book, it was also in our Kindergarten basics box. An engaging story about some mice playing with paints and trying to stay away from a cat at the same time. Walsh's adorable illustrations come to life again in this book. A good level 1 reading book for beginner's, but also enjoyed very much by my 2 yr old twins. A book even the parents can enjoy.
Profile Image for Crystal Marcos.
Author 4 books890 followers
October 6, 2011
Three white mice find paint jars and see what happens when they take a dip. What is even more fascinating is what happens when they start mixing those colors. This is a fun way to teach children primary and secondary colors. Watch out for that cat!
Profile Image for Sara Andrews.
30 reviews1 follower
November 6, 2014
“Mouse Paint,” is a wonderful concept book to teach children about primary and secondary colors. It is basic, predictable, and entertaining all at the same time. Children will catch onto the pattern with the authors repetitious words and the coaxing illustrations.

The story is about three white mice standing on a white piece of paper camouflaging themselves so that cat won’t see them. One day, the cat takes a nap and the three little mice discover three jars of paint and climb right in. Now one mouse is red, one is blue, and one is yellow (the three primary colors). Now the mice find puddles that they accidentally spilled and decide to dance each one in their own separate puddle. Now each mouse has created a “new” color (secondary color) orange, green, and purple. The story ends with the three mice cleaning themselves off in the cat’s water dish and painting the paper instead.

This story is short and sweet and a great way to introduce primary and secondary colors.
Profile Image for Kathy.
2,741 reviews5,978 followers
June 22, 2011
A good book to teach primary and secondary colors. Mice climb into jars of paint and then make puddles of color on the ground.

I've read this book so many times to my daughter we both have it nearly memorized.
Profile Image for Jon Nakapalau.
4,743 reviews635 followers
November 19, 2021
Really nice board book about colors. Small children will be introduced to how different colors mix to make new colors. I think the earlier you can interest small children in reading the better; books like this are the perfect to transition from being read to to reading on your own. Impressionistic illustrations.
Profile Image for Marhaba Laghari.
30 reviews3 followers
December 27, 2021
Was observing an other teacher while she read this book to her class, and I was absolutely invested. Great read!
Profile Image for Heidi-Marie.
3,854 reviews81 followers
March 19, 2018
These mice are adorable. A simple way to teach primary colors and color mixing. My favorite parts: the mice washing themselves in the cat's water bowl, and the ending. Cute. Simple. And I like the illustration technique.

7/20/15 Used in Movement storytime. Perfect for the age I tend to get. They loved seeing the colors emerge after the mice mixed them. As I read, I had them call out the colors to me to keep them involved and "test" their knowledge.

9/21/16 & 9/22/16 Used in toddler Mouse theme. The only downside to this book--I thought we had a BIG copy, and I couldn't find one. So I was stuck with this tiny one. But the kids loved it anyway. They liked seeing the color changes. And I had them telling me the colors. Best book of the 3 today.

3/19/18 Used in Movement again. Fabulous.
Profile Image for Shanna Gonzalez.
427 reviews36 followers
July 17, 2010
This playful, lucidly-written fantasy about three mice will entertain and amuse young readers while introducing them to a bit of color theory. In the story, three white mice discover three pots of paint on the white paper where they live. They first dive into the paint to color themselves, then splash in paint puddles and discover that primary colors, when combined, make new colors. Finally, they wash themselves clean (in the cat's water bowl) and paint the paper with all the available colors -- except for a section of white where they can hide from the cat.

This story is probably best suited for babies and toddlers, but its humor will also appeal to the kindergarten and early-elementary ages.
40 reviews
April 10, 2013
Mouse Paint is a really good book that does a great job at teaching children about primary and secondary colors but its also very entertaining. I like this book because of its simplicity, sometimes there are some concept books who are good teaching a subject but are way to complex so what is good about this book is that it uses white mice as the main focus and then has them dip in and mix paint to make new shades of colors.

LE: After the story you can take the children to the art center where you will have paper and finger paint ready for them. you can have several circles on the paper that have the name of the color written under it and then with the children you can start to fill in the circles with the paint and mix colors to make new shades.
Profile Image for Heather K (dentist in my spare time).
3,827 reviews5,501 followers
March 8, 2013
This is a new book for my 3 year old's repertoire. I liked that it taught her more about colors and that it encouraged interaction between the two of us while we read it. It could have been a bit more FUN for my taste but she has requested it three nights in a row so who am I to argue!
Profile Image for J.
906 reviews
February 22, 2018
A book that introduces the concept of mixing colors to make other colors. I don't like the constant insistence in our media to cast cats as villains in our culture, but I like the way it was just presented as a gentle fact that cats chase mice in this book.
Profile Image for ke-sha.
329 reviews175 followers
Read
December 31, 2017
Picked this up from the goodwill recently and thought it was cute. It will teach the kids about mixing colors and it's just a cute story overall I like it.
77 reviews1 follower
March 10, 2018
It is a concept book. It teaches children about primary and secondary colors. It is a very simple story and using very simple sentences, good for younger children.
Profile Image for Annie Wolford.
9 reviews
August 31, 2020
I did not like this book very much. I thought it was a little confusing because the of pictures displayed and the mice jumping in the puddles could be misleading to young kiddos. The issue I had with the pictures was the mice shown and then one mice jumping in the puddle. I thought this could be confusing because a kindergartner could have a hard time distinguishing who jumped in the puddle and what color they made. I think this book did have some positive intentions though, but the way it was portrayed could be troublesome for a young child.
Profile Image for Emily.
479 reviews
October 18, 2022
Not sure how I made it this long without rereading this (because let's be honest I know I had to have read it or had it read to me as a child) but so cute and such a great way to teach colors.
174 reviews6 followers
December 9, 2021
I'm tutoring a kid who is learning to read, so I bring books to read to him as a break. Mouse Paint was perfect for this kid, who told me that it is his destiny to be an artist: the pictures are simple, beautiful, and dynamic. When the mouse jumped in the red paint, I asked the kid to find the word "red", which I knew he could read; he found "blue" and "yellow" without being asked.
February 26, 2018
Copyright-1989
Number of Pages-32
Book Format-Hardcover
Reading Level-Pre-K-2nd grade; GR- H
Genre-Fiction
Lit Requirement- Concept book 1

Summary- The mice are white so the cat cannot see them. When the cat was asleep, they noticed paint jars. They decided to jump into the jars of paint and dance in the paint puddles. They notice that the puddles changed colors because their feet mixed it up. They washed themselves off to become white again and decided to paint on paper instead to create the newfound colors.

Response-Mouse Paint is a fun, informational book of how mixing 2 colors creates a new color (ex. blue and red make purple). I believe it is an introduction to mixing colors that some younger children may not understand yet. It would be a good book that an art teacher could read to his/her younger students.
24 reviews
November 17, 2018
Mouse Paint
Pintura de raton

Book Level: 2.2

Mouse Paint is a story about three white mice who decide to climb into some paint jars and have some fun while the cat is napping.

Genre: Picture book

Mentor writing text:

Ideas –
The writing in the text gives specific details of how the colors change to make a new color.

Organization- the sequence of the story and how the colors change is easy to follow.

Conventions- The punctuation in the story is consistent and simple. It has a simple sentence structure that uses, comma’s and quotation marks.

Classroom integration – This would be a great book to introduce the use of quotation marks. It could also be used to introduce primary and secondary colors into an art project where students mix there own paint and color in white mice. This book has both English and Spanish print so it could be used in Spanish
Profile Image for  Mummy Cat Claire.
835 reviews15 followers
November 13, 2019
I found this book at my local library. I read through it several times with my youngest. She already knows her colors but she still enjoyed this story.
3 white mice find red, blue, and yellow paint. Each of them plays in a different color paint and accidentally makes a new color.
I enjoyed reading this book with my child. I found an activity packet online that goes with this book. My child especially enjoyed the part where we mixed paint to create new color. I enjoyed filling out and discussing the paperwork with her. We worked on shapes and math, too.
This is a fun story that my child seemed to enjoy. The story offers quite a bit of education value, which I liked. There's a bit of humor at the end.
Profile Image for Little Ducky.
66 reviews
Read
April 18, 2022
Third review: My gramma read this to me again. ❤ I am starting to be more interested in the story at sixteen months old. I can even say 'mouse' now. 🐭
My mom thinks this book is funny and clever. It shows different paints mixing and making new colors. This will probably help me learn colors when I am a little bit bigger! 👶

Second review:
We read this tonight at bedtime. I liked looking at the funny mice and the colors. This little book is just the right size for me to hold and turn pages. The author and publishers were very thoughtful when they made this book for small people like me! 👶

Original review:
My gramma read this to me while I played with toys. 👵💗👶
Profile Image for Sandy.
368 reviews3 followers
March 18, 2019
I use this for storytime every chance I can! I love this story, it is deceptively simple: a trio of mice dip into jars of paint to avoid getting cat by a hungry cat. The story is great for teaching primary colors and which colors combine to make other colors (*coughARTTEACHERSUSETHISBOOKcough*). This is a fun story for preschool and kindergarten. I was also pleasantly surprised to find MOUSE PAINT available in hardcover and translated as PINTA RATONES (the translation is great so for anyone worried about the Spanish...don't fret!)
Profile Image for Marissa Estrada.
49 reviews
October 13, 2017
Children are attracted to colorful pictures. They like stories being told with animals and mess! This book is a combination of all three. I read the big book version of this book and I absolutely loved it. They mix colors to make other colors but are sneaky with the cat that they still left just a little bit of white so the cat would not find them. It is very cute and capturing with the colors and mixtures. Silly, and perfect for children 36-48 months or even younger!
Profile Image for Anna.
1,998 reviews12 followers
April 29, 2018
Great for ages 1 to 3 years old. We actually read this in preschool and they loved this book along with the craft we did with them. There's white mice in this book that jump into what they thought was mouse paint and they discover along the way that certain colors mixed together make other colors. Yellow and Red = Orange
Blue and Red = Purple
Yellow and Blue = Green

Great introduction for toddlers to learn about primary colors and what colors make other colors.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 641 reviews

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