Picture books –ideal read alouds for young and old

Picture books –ideal read alouds for young and oldPicture books are ideal for reading aloud to students of all agesSome rights reserved

Next time you are wondering what to read, how about some picture books? As Anthony Browne, author and illustrator of many well loved picture books said: ‘Picture books are for everybody at any age, not books to be left behind as we grow older. The best ones leave a tantalising gap between the pictures and the words, a gap that is filled by the reader’s imagination.’

Picture books also make ideal read-alouds. They offer a rich source of vocabulary, stimulate the imagination in students young and old and can help re-associate reading with pleasure.

The Edsource article Study says reading aloud to children, more than talking, builds literacy  quotes Dominic W. Massaro from the University of California:

 Reading aloud is the best way to help children develop word mastery and grammatical understanding, which form the basis for learning how to read”

Despite the strong link between reading aloud and literacy, reading aloud sometimes slips down the list of priorities due to demanding school work-loads. And, it is not often seen in classes with older students.

World Read Aloud Day, this year on 24 February, aims to refocus attention on the importance of literacy and the power of words; "…especially those words that are shared from one person to another. " from the LitWorld website

What are you doing to celebrate World Read Aloud day? We’d love you to share your plans and ideas in the comments.

Read more

Read more about World Read Aloud Day, this site includes resources such as classroom and community kits.

Find out more about Reading aloud

Read more about picture books and download the resource Using picture books in the classroom

Read more about sophisticated picture books

Two Different Communication Genres and Implications for Vocabulary Development and Learning to Read, by Dominic W. Massaro

Image: Picture books section, by San Jose library on Flickr

By Jo Buchan

Jo is the Senior Specialist (Developing Readers) for Services to Schools.

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