Friday, 26 April 2019

Story Sack – ‘The Day the Crayons Quit’ by Drew Dewalt & Oliver Jeffers and ‘The Crayon Man’ by Natascha Biebow & Steve Salerno

For a long time I’ve wanted to make a story based on Drew Dewalt ‘s and Oliver Jerrers’s ‘The Day the Crayons Quit,’ but as is often the way I could not find an age appropriate related non-fiction book to compliment the story. It was therefore joy to me, when I heard that SCWBI-BI Regional Director, (who I’ve had the pleasure of working with in my time volunteering for SCBWI) Natascha Biebow had written a picture book about the man who invented crayons, as it is the illusive missing piece of the story stack.

So before we start our post, here is a quick note on what a story sack is, and what it includes…

Story Sack Checklist

  • A good quality fiction book. (picture book or novel)
  • A non-fiction book related to the story and themes in the chosen picture book.
  • Toys, (ideally a soft toy for younger children).
  • A game or activity also related to the theme of the chosen fiction book.
  • Optional worksheet based on the story and themes off the story sack.

Fiction Book - ‘The Day the Crayons Quit’ by Drew Dewalt & Oliver Jeffers

The Day the Crayons Quit is a celebration of colour and creativity. It’s a humorous read, as the Crayons all write letters to their owner Duncan complaining about how he uses them; pointing out the notions of preconceptions of how things are; pink for girls, blue for water, and so on. It is done in charming way which is reminiscent of the Little Prince’s drawings in the classic Antonie de Saint-Exupery book. Duncan responds by unleashing his creativity to use his colours in a more liberated way, pleasing everyone, including his teacher. The Day the Crayons Quit is an original, unique and funny read with vibrant illustrations which work perfectly with the text.

Non-Fiction Book ‘The Crayon Man’ by Natascha Biebow & Steve Salerno

‘The Crayon Man’, is much akin to ‘The Day the Crayons Quit’ as it is also a celebration of creativity and colour, telling the remarkable true story, of Edwin Binney who invented the Crayola waxed crayons. The book is beautiful, as it explores Edwin’s journey with fun flowing narrative interjected with boxes of facts and beautiful illustrations by Steve Salerno. In addition it has a biography of Edwin Binney and a section explaining the way Crayola Crayons are made today, which makes it a perfect companion book for the story sack – Thanks Natascha and Steve! 


This is maybe the easiest story sack I’ve ever done as far as soft toys are concerned, as there is a wide range of ‘The Day the Crayons Quit’ merchandise available online, I opted for the Crayon box full of Crayon finger puppets, which was relatively inexpensive at £6.99 including postage. Plus I’ve included a man finger puppet which can be used as Edwin too. 


There are ready made games available online, like a fabric crayon matching set from Esty, or a Crayola branded card game (if you can find one cheap enough), but to keep cost down, I chose to make my own. So, I used four small draw string bags that I already had and filled them with four packs of chunky crayons (89p each) , which can be used in multiple ways…

Crayon Colour Snap

Up to four players

Equipment: Four bags full of identical set of crayons.


1. On the count of three, all players pull a random crayon from their bag.

2. If any colours match, the first person to shut Snap wins them all, and places them in front of them. Any un-matching coloured crayons go back in the bag they came from.

3. When the bags are empty, the player with the most crayons in front of them wins. In the event of a tie, those players play again, until there is an outright winner. 

Crayon Colour Quick Fire Draw

Up to four players


· Four bags full of identical set of crayons. Colour Dice. Paper. Doodle cards, (or story cube)


1. All players have a bag with identical crayons inside (that correspond to the colours on the dice).

2. Turn over a doodle card to see what you need to draw, or if using a story cube, throw the cube.

3. Throw colour dice - to get a colour.

4. Find the colour in your bag, and draw the picture with that colour. First player to shout done, and having drawn the picture correctly in the right colour wins. If using a doodle cards, the player gets the card, and the overall winner is the one with the most cards at the end, if using a story cube, keep tally.

Worksheet or Activity

For a activity, I’ve included a pack of Crayola crayons, for drawing and colouring, a pack of crayon stickers and a ‘the Day the Crayons Quit’ inspired activity Sheet. 

Thank you for visiting!