Dreaming UP: Dazzling Blend of Fantasy with Reality Celebrates Diversity

Dreaming Up.51I-nQ9NtqL._SY498_BO1,204,203,200_Dreaming UP: A Celebration of Building written and illustrated by Christy Hale pairs child-built fantasy constructions with photographs of startlingly similar constructions from around the globe.  The result is a magical trip around the world in a way that simultaneously celebrates the diversity of architectural memes with an equally diverse presentation of characters. Hale illuminates the connection between child’s play and world architecture with delightful concrete poems that also mirror the constructions.

The book subtitled, A Celebration of Building   serves as an excellent metaphor for building community, creativity and relationships. The illustrations feature a diverse characters who create universal kid creations: sofa forts, sand castles, blocks, etc. The accompanying architectural photographs bring those imaginary designs to life in real buildings from all around the world. The similarities between fantasy and reality are stunning. Some of them are so unusual it is difficult to believe that they are real. Such fun to see them!

The author has included end notes on each photo which provide fascinating information.

This book can inspire on many levels. Imagine a child’s delight to see constructions similar to many they have created during playtime come to life. Perhaps it might even stimulate  their interest in becoming an architect or engineer so that they too can build such wonderful things.

magnifying-lens-AQ.2-161x300AQ* Dreaming UP: A Celebration of Building written and illustrated by Christy Hale  is a great celebration of world community. It obviously values the aesthetics of the many cultures featured. This reinforces the important role of diversity and how it enhances and strengthens our world. Just as in nature, diverse communities are healthy communities. And it serves as an excellent jumping off point for a family project exploring aspects of an adoptee’s home culture and/or the ancestral culture of the adoptive parents.



Diverse Children’s Books is a book-sharing meme designed to promote the reading and writing of children’s books that feature diverse characters. This community embraces all kinds of diversity including (and certainly not limited to) diverse, inclusive, multicultural, and global books for children of all backgrounds.

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Most Clicked Post from Last Time

Svenja takes “most-clicked” honors again this time with her post on 30 Multicultural Books about Immigration in honor of June as Immigrant Heritage Month. The post is divided into books geared for preschoolers and elementary students, and the elementary recommendations are further subdivided by the continent of origin. You can find more great posts by revisiting the previous linkup here.

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10 comments

  1. Katie Logonauts says:

    What a precious book! As a kid I loved building and creating structures, so I think I would have been drawn to this book immediately. Love the #diversekidlit emphasis too. Great shout-out!

    • gswift says:

      It is a delightful book. The architecture is so fanciful it is difficult to believe they exist in reality. and yes, I agree, it handles diversity as part of the fabric of the world not as something that one can add or subtract.

    • gswift says:

      I truly loved this book and how it felt like you magically infused life into kids’ imaginary constructions. Wonderful. I’ll share these links with my daughter who is the media specialist in our local grade school. They maintain a Maker Spcae which offers lots of opportunity for dreaming the future.

      • Christy Hale says:

        Gayle, one thing your daughter might try, is photographing the kids’ constructions from the Maker Space and assembling the images into their own school DREAMING UP book that could even be checked out of the library. Kids will feel very important if their creations are in a book.

        Thank you for shining light on my book.

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