Making Friends Is an Art! by Julia Cook: Book Review & Activity

I am a huge fan of Julia Cook.  I have not come across many books about friendship that I love to use with kids.  However, Julia hit the crayon right on the tip when writing this colorful book.


Brown is the least used crayon in the box.  He’s tall, geeky and feels like he doesn’t fit in.  Each crayon displays a positive friendship trait.  Black looks out for everyone, Pink is a good listener, Light Green is honest, Dark Green is trustworthy, Blue gives hugs, Yellow does what’s right, White is a mediator, Purple has hopes and dreams, Orange likes to have fun and everyone loves Red.  Brown wishes he could be like the other crayons.  Brown complains a lot, hardly ever laughs, is disrespectful, and usually wears a frown.  He asks each crayon for advice on how to make friends.  Blue gives Brown a hug and suggests he figure out how to use the right colors.  He seeks advice from Light Green because Brown knows he will be honest.  Light Green tells Brown, “To have good friends, you need to be a friend.”   After talking to all of the crayons, Brown realizes he is a mixture of all the colors.  He has everything inside of him needed to be a good friend.  Once Brown embraces all of his good character traits he is able to make friends with the other colors.

Discussion Questions

1. Why doesn’t Brown have any friends?

2. How does Brown behave?

3. How do the other colors behave?

4. Which color or colors are you most like?

5. Which color or colors are your friends like?

6. What does Brown learn from the others colors?

7.  How does Brown learn how to be a good friend?

8.  What did Brown change about himself?

9.  How can you help other children who do not have friends?

10.  How do you make friends?

Crayon Crown Activity

Brown learned he is a mixture of all the colors/friendship traits.  You are also a mixture of many friendship traits.  Pick your favorite colors to use for coloring your crayon crown. Transform each point on your crown into a crayon.  In the story, each crayon shared a tip with Brown on how to be a friend.  Write a friendship tip on each crayon tip on your crown.  Examples: funny, happy, honest, helpful, smile, trustworthy.  Wear your crown to show others how to be a good friend.



 Crayon Template

Cut out on the black line.  Connect both crown pieces using tape.  You might need to add a third crown piece depending on the child’s head size.



 Additional Activities

A friendship tip worksheet with a bookmark activity will be available July 13th for subscription members only.

A crayon game teaching the difference between desirable friendship traits and undesirable friendship traits will be available July 16th for subscription members only.