Book Review: Perfect Square by Michael Hall

perfectsquare

Perfect Square by Michael Hall

One perfect square is transformed again and again into something surprising and new.  On Monday, the square had holes poked in it and was cut into pieces, so it became a fountain.  On Tuesday, the square was torn into scraps, so it became a garden.  Shredded strips became a park.  Shattered shards became a bridge.  Ribbons with curves became a river.  Wrinkles and crumples became a mountain.  Until finally, the square was just a square again and had to find a way to change within its four sides.  The result?  Triumphant!

This very simple premise offers small children a glimpse at art and inspiration.  It celebrates creativity, creating something new from something ripped, crumpled or sliced.  Hall sets the perfect tone with his brief text, allowing the images to do most of the work in the book.  My favorite part of the text is that the square is the one reinventing itself rather than an outside force doing the creativity.  It changes the dynamic of the book entirely.

I can see so many art project emerging from this book.  Get it into the hands of elementary art teachers in your school district!  If you enjoy crafts with your preschool story times, share some squares of paper in a variety of colors, offer scissors, hole punches, markers and more.  You just wait to see what those children create!  Appropriate for ages 3-6.

Reviewed from library copy.

Also reviewed by Fuse #8 and There’s a Book.