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The Knight and the Dragon by Tomie dePaola

This months Virtual Book Club for Kids Author is Tomie dePaola and after looking through the books on Amazon (there was no Tomie dePaola books in our counties library at all) and the one that caught J’s eye was The Knight and the Dragon with story and pictures by Tomie dePaola.

Tomie dePaola

This book is beautifully illustrated with a colourful scaly dragon and a brave knight, set out in comic book style it’s perfect for preschoolers as you can extend the story and get them to tell you what is going on the frames within the story. The story has a moral that tells you that you don’t have to do what you “should” do and you can go against your sterotype which is also a great message for kids.

We took a look through the book and one of the Knight’s activities caught J’s eye – he painted his shields ready for battle, J decided at this point that he wanted to create some shields himself.

What you need to create simple Knights Shields

Strong Cardstock
Black Marker Pen

How you go about making the simple Knights Shields

I cut out 4 knights shield shapes from strong cardstock for J and T to decorate and set them up at a painting station.

knight shieldWe’ve started to introduce painting with paint pots instead of using paper plates as a variation and something that they use at preschool and J will use in school as well. T at 20 months has got the hang of using them as well.

toddler paintingWhen they had finished painting the shields we set them aside and returned to reading the book as well as looking at some books from the library about knights as J noticed that some of the shields had got faces and scary animals drawn on them. This lead to a great little discussion about how the knighs made themselves look more scary by having big shields with faces and fierce animals on them to frighten their enemies so J decided to draw faces on his shields.

creating shields with preschoolersIt was interesting to see which way J thought that the shield should be with the pointy part at the top. Because J drew on the shields so did T have to.

Toddler drawingIt was interesting to see how J and T both took to this activity after reading the book and now we read our book whilst holding our shields.

the knight and the dragon activities

Back in the Spring we created a knights helmet out of a paper bag which would be perfect to go with this book as well.

Paper Bag Knights Helmet

Now onto the Virtual Book Club for this month

If you would like to take part you have until the middle of next month to join in. Find one of the books by Tomie dePaola that interests you and your child, read the book together and create an activity or activities based on the book and then either blog about it or share what you have done with us on our Virtual Book Club for Kids Facebook Page. If you blog about it don’t forget to come back and link up to the blog hop below and check out some of the other Tomie dePaola books and activities that other bloggers are doing this month.

To give you a heads up Next Months Author is Jan Brett pop along to your library and get hold of some of the wonderful Christmas themed books and start reading them as part of your advent countdown and get bringing books alive with your kids.


  1. What wonderful shields! Thank you for sharing on Read.Explore.Learn. I will be sharing this post on the Read.Explore.Learn. Facebook page tomorrow.

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