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Jan 19

Wordless, or Almost Wordless, Books

Posted on January 19, 2016 at 11:30 AM by Christina Stuck

There is much to love about wordless books. Children read emotions and pictures before they can read words. So, there is a definite lure and need of illustrated books for little ones.

But, these wordless books work best when you as the caregiver help to read the book with your child. Naturally, you can do this for a book that has words, but since we have a few sweet wordless, or semi-wordless, books I thought to emphasize those today. And, since they work best one-on-one, I can't share them during storytime as often as I would like. Here are some of my favorites:

Molly Idle and her Flora series
Jorey Hurley with Fetch and Nest
Hank Finds an Egg by Rebecca Dudley
The Carl series by Alexandra Day
David Wiesner has some wild ones! Mr. Wuffles, Tuesday & June 29, 1999 are just a few!
Black & White written and illustrated by David Macaulay

By using these books, you can express new vocabulary and help your child develop his or her own ability to explain what happens just by "reading" the pictures.  

And do not forget your older ones! There is even a need for these wordless books in elementary school and beyond. Like with the younger children, by "reading" the pictures, older kids can hone their ability to explain and narrate by looking at the pictures. If you do not like the idea of your older child reading a comic/graphic novel, then you are not alone. However, be assured that your child is being engaged in more than one way. We just received some rather interesting graphic novels called SheHeWe, Bird CatDog, and FishFishFish all written by Lee Nordling and illustrated by Meritxell Bosch. They made it on this year's Little Maverick Graphic Novel Reading List. There are no words, but with such detailed art, there really is no room NOT to develop some narrative skills, which are so necessary in life.