The Dot — International Dot Day

The Dot

Peter H. Reynolds, author and illustrator

Candlewick Press, Fiction, Sep. 15, 2003

Suitable for: Ages 5 and up

Themes:  Art, Imagination, Self-Confidence, Inspiration

Opening/Synopsis “Art class was over, but Vashti sat glued to her chair.  Her paper was empty.  Vashti’s teacher leaned over the blank paper.  ‘Ah! A polar bear in a snow storm,’ she said. ‘  ‘Very funny!  said Vashti.  ‘I just can’t draw!”  Her teacher asks Vashti to just make a mark.  Vashti angrily gives the paper a jab.  She asks Vashti to sign it.  One morning Vashti walks into art class and sees her signed “dot” hanging in a frame behind the teacher’s desk.  She decides she can make a better dot and begins to paint dots of all colors and sizes.

Why I love this book:  Peter Reynolds has written and illustrated an inspirational book that encourages children of all ages to be brave and “make their mark.”  There is no right or wrong way.   He wants kids of all ages to imagine, dream and create.  And this week over 500,000 children in all 50 states and around the globe  will be participating in International Dot Day, whether in their classrooms or at home.   Many kidlit bloggers will be making their dots this week.  My dot is below.

Resources:  Create your own dot.  Visit to learn more about International Dot Day, activity suggestions, resources, a global map showing participants and a peek at the dots being created by celebrities.  There also is a Facebook page devoted to International Dot Day with frequent updates.   There also is a teacher’s resource guide for Reynold’s The Dot and Ish.  Below is the dot I created on my iPad with ArtRage.  Check out the dot made by my colleague  Beth Stilborn , who also encouraged bloggers to post their dots.

To see a complete listing of all the Perfect Picture Books with resources, please visit author Susanna Leonard Hill’s Perfect Picture Books.

My Dot

Patricia Howe Tilton 2012

About Patricia Tiltonhttps://childrensbooksheal.wordpress.comI want "Children's Books Heal" to be a resource for parents, grandparents, teachers and school counselors. My goal is to share books on a wide range of topics that have a healing impact on children who are facing challenges in their lives. If you are looking for good books on grief, autism, visual and hearing impairments, special needs, diversity, bullying, military families and social justice issues, you've come to the right place. I also share books that encourage art, imagination and creativity. I am always searching for those special gems to share with you. If you have a suggestion, please let me know.

58 thoughts on “The Dot — International Dot Day

  1. Such a fabulous book, wonderful message and inspirational idea. Truly a message all kids should hear. Thank you for introducing me to the book and International Dot Day – a way for people who don’t think of themselves as artistic to express something of themselves in art. Love your beautiful rainbow dot – it looks like possibility 🙂


    • Susanna, it is an inspirational idea for kids. I’ve been looking at some of the dots being posted from around the world. A school in Afghanistan wrote and sang a song about the Dot. A school in America, created a human dot with 600 kids. It is inspiring kids everywhere. Would love to be a fly on the wall listening to how kids and classrooms came up with their dot creations.


  2. Your dot gave me a rainbow of smiles Pat!

    One of my favorite ‘holidays’ – hope Hallmark doesn’t take it over and invent dot cards and dot tree ornaments and dot t-shirts, etc!


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  4. Love your rainbow dot-dot, Pat! That must have been fun to create!

    This is such a good book — I so appreciate Peter’s “Creatrilogy.” It’s perfect for kids like the kid I was, who lose their confidence in their artistic ability. Happy International Dot Day-ish!


  5. Pat, love your Dot-of-Dots! I found myself not only looking at it, but into it which in turn sparked a creative flow. Thanks 😀

    A simple dot spurs creativity. I love it! Can’t wait to read DOT.


  6. I love your dot, Patricia. I checked out this book from the library and shared it with a friend who teachers middle school art. I told her about the website. She shared all of this with her students, and they made dots as the first project of the year. She loved it and I think she will repeat it every year! Thanks for the great review!


  7. Cool dot! I love it! Josie thinks it looks like a peacock 🙂 Thank you for telling us about International Dot Day. Josie and I will post our dots tomorrow! 🙂 I am also going to do a post about Dr. Clunes Sahel event!


    • Thank you Erik and Josie. It does look like a peacock! You’re right. I saw it as a kind of mandala of color. But, I like Josie’s version better. A peacock it is — and I love peacocks. Glad you’re posting dots. And, yes I want to post about Sahel — that’s why I left Saturday open.


    • Craig, I’ve been talking International Dot Day for the past few weeks. You missed those posts. I’m glad I could be of help. 🙂 I tried to click on the link and it would let me in. Says I’m not a member. Glad you liked the post.


    • Terry, with all the busy twitter traffic, I’m surprised you saw my post. We had a good turn out of bloggers posting their dots. And, our FabHampton class with Peter at the Southampton Stonybrook Children’s Literature Conference, created a dot. It has been a fun experience and very worthwhile. I love the stories that I’m hearing from people.


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  9. Pat…thank you for a super wonderful post…I didn’t know about International Dot Day until I heard it from you and Beth. It is a wonderful movement to encourage kids to freely express themselves through art…I just love this!


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  12. A great book for kids and adults. Probably should be required reading for some of my design classes. I meet more and more people who were told one day, somewhere that they couldn’t draw. It’s nice at any age to see encouragement.


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