Volunteers needed in March!   Click here to sign up.
 Site Areas: 
Printer-friendly version   

Red Sings from Treetops: A Year in Colors

Last updated Sunday, August 6, 2017

Author: Joyce Sidman
Illustrator: Pamela Zagarenski
Date of Publication: 2009
ISBN: 0547014945
Grade Level: 2nd    (GLCs: Click here for grade level guidelines.)
Date(s) Used: Aug. 2017

Synopsis: With original and spot-on perceptions, Joyce Sidman's poetry brings the colors of the seasons to life in a fresh light, combining the senses of sight, sound, smell and taste. In this Caldecott Honor book, illustrator Pam Zagarenski's interpretations go beyond the concrete, allowing us to not just see color, but feel it. Each season is explored in terms of how it encompasses colors. In the spring, “Red sings / from treetops . . . / each note dropping / like a cherry / into my ear.” Green “peeks from buds,” and yellow “slips goldfinches their spring jackets.” Succeeding seasons offer other opportunities for the colors to spread their particular magic.

Note to readers:
•  Explain the four seasons and some of the differences.
•  Make sure you have plenty of markers & crayons of all the colors in a rainbow.

Discussion topics for before reading:
•  Who is Red?
•  What colors do you think represent seasons in the year?
•  What is your favorite color?
•  What is your favorite season of the year?


•  cerulean - a deep sky-blue color
•  rhubarb - the thick leaf stalks of a cultivated plant of the dock family, which are reddish or green and eaten as a fruit after cooking.
•  goldfinch - a small, brightly colored bird with yellow feathers in the plumage.

Discussion topics for during/after reading:
•  Have you ever seen a rainbow?
•  What are all the colors of a rainbow? R.O.Y.G.B.I.V. (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet)
•  What colors do you think of when it storms or rains?
•  What colors are raccoons?
•  Can you smell or taste some colors? Which ones?

Craft ideas:
•  Fold a piece of paper so you have four spaces. Draw a scene for each season (Summer, Fall, Winter, Spring) in each of the 4 spaces.
•  Draw a picture with all the colors in the rainbow - R.O.Y.G.B.I.V. (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, violet).
•  Draw a picture of fun things to do in the summer.
•  Check our craft ideas for August on Pinterest!

*Note: These craft ideas are just suggestions. You can use them, but you don’t have to use them. You can expand upon them, or add your own twist. Remember, though, that the focus of your time should not be on the development and execution of a craft; the focus should be on the read-aloud and the enjoyment of the book!