“'What is the use of a book', thought Alice, 'without pictures or conversations?'” -- Lewis Carroll
My youngest, Paddy, has been a reader for a long time. Though now the Kindle and chapter books have mostly replaced picture books in his quiet hours, when he was younger he was often to be found pulling stacks of picture books down from their shelves and poring over them.
And of course, most of the picture books were ones I had read to him many, many times before he could read on his own. So I don't have dozens of picture books around the house that Paddy and I haven't read.
“Child! Do not throw this book about; refrain from the unholy pleasure of cutting all the pictures out.” -- Hilaire Belloc
Aidan is a different matter. He is 13 and thinks of himself as one of the big kids, though he still likes Pixar movies and some of the board books he loved to pieces as a preschooler. He moved from the rhythmic books of early childhood straight to the realistic non-fiction books about ambulances, fire trucks and construction engines. He loves creative language and loves researching on his own unique areas of interest, but he has never been much interested in Story per se. I suppose he may be a little like an autistic child in that regard.
So I am in with the picture book challenge, for these reasons. I believe that good picture books are excellent reading for any age. They are great kick-offs for unit studies; at their best, they combine fine art and fine writing; and their compactness means that they pack a lot of punch for the time it takes to read them.
There are all kinds of ways to teach using picture books.
My challenge is to bring in my independent-reader 9 year old and my active practical 13 year old.
Now for what to pick for the September Challenge:
Since we are studying the Middle Ages this year, when looking for favorite picture books in our shelves I was not surprised to find myself picking out folk tales and medieval legends.
Here are my September choices: inn picture form.
I will let you know more about them when we've gone through them all.
- Medieval Picture Books from Love2Learn
- Picture Books about the Middle Ages -- an Amazon list by Suzanne Gallus
- Our Ten Favorite Books about the Middle Ages at I Capture the Rowhouse
If you have a favorite picture book connected with the MEdieval period of history, please share in the comments!