written and illustrated by Lynn Rowe Reed
(Holiday House) 2010
Source: Orange County Public Library
A student at Hughes Elementary wants to try out his box of 64 crayons, but his class schedule doesn't provide an opportunity. While at lunch, he sneaks his crayons into the cafeteria and tries out new colors on the new substitute principal's bulletin board. This upsets Mr. Greyson so much that he bans all art supplies and cancels recess! Suddenly, Hughes Elementary is thrown into a world without color. A famous illustrator on a school visit is upset when all of the color is gone from his illustrations. It's up to the disposed crayons in the garbage can to save the day.
Color Chaos! is a fun text for teaching color theory. The story, combined with the excellent back matter, will help students learn about terms like secondary colors, tertiary colors, and analogous colors. After reading this book, you could investigate in your classroom and school to observe and think about how the colors go together. You could also have students design their own classroom and explain why they picked particular colors. The Art Lesson, by Tomie dePaola, would be a good companion text for exploring theme.
Click on this link for a color wheel activity tied to the book.