Draw some charcoal drawings

Here's some creative fun from the Children's Laureate: experiment with a stick of charcoal to create some magical, atmospheric journeys.  

Inspired by Into the Forest by Anthony Browne (Walker Books)

Staring into Space: resources from the Children's Laureate

Download this resource

Charcoal drawings activity sheet

Discover all the amazing, atmospheric drawings you can do with just a bit of charcoal and some little smudges.

Download all the Staring into Space resources

Six activity sheets to try

From making your own book to a 3D world, there's a creative idea to suit every child and classroom.

Extra ideas for the charcoal drawing resource

If you have time and want more inspiration, Lauren and Josey have some brilliant ideas of other things to do alongside this activity. They're all very good companions to Into the Forest by Anthony Brown, which prompted this resource.

Read these books

The Book about Moomin, Mymble and Little My

Tove Jansson
A journey where you literally step through the pages. It gets you climbing over boulders and twirling through a vacuum hose with lots of strange creatures peeking through real holes in the pages, hiding and disgusting! 

The House at Pooh Corner

A A Milne
Beautiful drawings of walks in the wind, sun, rain and snow. 'When you see someone putting on his big boots, you can be pretty sure an adventure is going to happen.'

The Adventures of Treehorn

Florence Parry Heide and Edward Gorey
An unnerving book full of unsettling illustrations and stories that are out of the ordinary and take you out of your comfort zone. This is one of Lauren Child's favourite books. 

Search online for this art

These are all fascinating artists and art that may inspire your drawings:

  • Odilon Redon: The Smiling Spider, Head on a Stem, Two Trees
  • Vincent Van Gogh: Pollard Birches
  • Graham Sutherland: Wood Interior
  • Samuel Palmer: Early Morning

Listen to some music

Listen to these musical pieces before, after or during your charcoal creation, and see how the sound makes you feel and draw.

  • Camille Saint-Saens: Danse Macabre
  • Berlioz: Symphonie Fantastique – Dream of a Witches Sabbath
  • Rachmaninov: The Isle of the Dead – Symphonic poem, Opus 29


Staring into Space: resources from the Children's Laureate 

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Find out more about Into the Forest

Into the Forest

Author: Anthony Browne

One night a young boy is awoken by a terrible noise. The next day he finds his father has disappeared and his mother doesn't know when he's coming back.

Read more about Into the Forest

Staring into Space

Find out more about all six resources

From making your own book to a 3D world, there's a creative idea to suit every child and classroom.

Waterstones Children's Laureate

Find out about Lauren Child

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