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The Mixed-Up Chameleon by Eric Carle

The Mixed-Up Chameleon (edition 1988)

by Eric Carle, Eric Carle (Illustrator)

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Title:The Mixed-Up Chameleon
Authors:Eric Carle
Other authors:Eric Carle (Illustrator)
Info:HarperCollins (1988), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 40 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:Picture book, being yourself, animals, self-acceptance, colors, fiction

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The Mixed-Up Chameleon by Eric Carle



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The mixed up chameleon carries a powerful message to young students in a creative, inventive, and silly way: it is important to be yourself and to enjoy just being yourself. It follows a chameleon as it tries to take on characteristics of other zoo animals, only to find that taking on those characteristics comes at a cost. Eric Carle’s signature beautiful collage illustrations make the added characteristics fun. I could see myself using this book in several ways in a classroom. I am strongly considering creating an Eric Carle based writing unit for my kindergarten class during student teaching this year. However, if I were looking for a way to incorporate just this book with younger students I think it would be fun to read this book and then have students create collages of mixed up animals. The mixed up chameleon seems like a book that students would greatly enjoy.
  cseiger | May 29, 2014 |
I loved this book! The first reason I loved this book was for the die-cut pages in the middle of the story. As the chameleon wished more and more to become like another animal, the pages began to have a piece of the page missing starting at the top of the page. On the left page, a picture of the previous animal the chameleon wished to be like was placed small under the cut out of the page, and on the right page, symmetrical to the previous animal, was a color that was associated with the animal. For example, after the chameleon wished to be like a turtle, the next two-page spread had a turtle added to the left side of the page and the color green added to the right side of the page. At the end, all the colors came together to form a rainbow. This made the book very different than a conventional picture book in that the die-cut pages added a tactile and visual dimension to reading. Another reason I liked this book was for the crazy illustrations. As the chameleon wished to become like another animal, a part of that animal was added to his body. For example, when he wished to become more like a giraffe to “see things far away,” his body changed to have a long giraffe neck. As the story went on, and more body parts were added and the end result looked crazy with fins, antlers, and wings all on the same body. This visually reiterated the moral of the big idea of the story as well, which is that even though you may wish to be like someone else, being like them can make you lose what you enjoy in life, which for the chameleon was eating flies! ( )
  mspisa1 | Mar 4, 2014 |
The Mixed- Up Chameleon is a story about a Chameleon that wishes it could be every other animal but himself. But when the Chameleon is too much of other animals and not himself, he cannot catch a fly, which is what makes him happy. The Chameleon learns that he needs to be himself. This book would be good in a classroom setting because it teaches a lesson about being yourself and not wanting what other people have so much that you forget who you are and what makes you happy. The illustrations in this book are great for the message because they are abstract. The picture of the chameleon being many different animals would be enjoyable to children in a classroom setting and be able to get the message across.
  izzymcdizzy | Feb 11, 2014 |
The story of a chameleon who wishes he could be just like each of the animals in the zoo. Wish by wish he becomes less chameleon and a little more bizarre having parts from all the other animals. When he tries to catch a fly to eat he finds he is too mixed up to even do something simple. At that point he wishes he could be his old chameleon self again and poof! He is a chameleon again. Realizing being yourself is ok, that while other animals have great qualities, he has qualities that are important too.
  stacy3176 | Feb 6, 2014 |
“The Mixed-Up Chameleon” is a sweet story about a chameleon that wishes it could be all different kinds of animals, instead of itself. However, in the end, realizes that it wants to be no one but itself. “I wish I could be myself. The chameleon’s wish came true. And it caught the fly!” (pg. 30). With creative illustrations, this story teaches children to take pride in who they are and never wish to be anyone else. To wish to be someone else is to waste the person you are, which Eric Carle conveys in this story. ( )
  alines1 | Oct 7, 2013 |
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Book description
The chameleon's life was not very exciting until the day it discovered it could change not only its color but its shape and size,too. When it saw the wonderful animals in the zoo, it immediately wanted to be like them — and ended up like all of them at once — with hilarious results.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0064431622, Paperback)

The chameleon's life was not very exciting until the day it discovered it could change not only its color but its shape and size,too. When it saw the wonderful animals in the zoo, it immediately wanted to be like them -- and ended up like all of them at once -- with hilarious results.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 14:03:53 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

A bored chameleon wishes it could be more like all the other animals it sees, but soon decides it would rather just be itself. Cutouts along the edges of the pages display various animals and colors.

(summary from another edition)

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Penguin Australia

An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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