DISCUSSING PICTURES IN A BOOK - WHEN, HOW?
Linda M. Penn
Do you feel like you waste “reading time” when you and your child talk about the pictures in a book? After all, you are not really reading words, right?
Please don’t think about reading as only words. Pictures are important and provide clues for reading new words, reading comprehension, and ENJOYMENT! (Remember my favorite saying – keep the reading experience fun?) Can you imagine reading a book with a little one and there aren’t any pictures? So how is the child going to grow and develop an enjoyment of reading – by talking about the pictures!
So to address the question of WHEN to discuss pictures, my answer is anytime.
To address the question of HOW to make the most of the pictures, here are some suggestions:
If the child has not read the book before
1) Preview the cover by reading the title and looking at the picture. “What do you think will be in this story? Who might be in this story?” It helps a child to think critically – aids in comprehension of the story.
2) Read the front and back matter – title page, about the author and illustrator. It helps the child to feel connected to the story in some way if they know something about the author and illustrator.
3) Skim through the pictures in the story or do a full picture walk if there aren’t many pages to the story. “Have you changed your mind about what is going to happen in the story now that you saw more pictures? Any different idea of who will be in the story?” Child is thinking critically and comparing to previous ideas.
4) Recall any real-life experiences. “Do these pictures remind you of anything that has ever happened to you?” More critical thinking – aids in comprehension. The more connections a child can make ahead of the reading of the actual story, the more interested the child will be in reading the story.
5) SO NOW YOU ARE ACTUALLY READY TO READ!!!!!!
6) The pictures may help a child with figuring out a new word and its meaning while you are reading.
If the child has read the book before
There are still reasons to discuss the pictures even if your child has read the book before.
1) The pictures may help the child to recall a word that is hard to figure out. Just because the child figured out a word previously in a reading, doesn’t mean the word is a mastered word.
2) If the child reads a word or sentence incorrectly, suggest: “Look at the picture, does that make sense with what you read? You might want to rethink your reading.”
3) With each time a child reads a book, there are different things from the pictures that “pop” off the page, making for a more enjoyable reading experience. They will even point things out to you that you never noticed in a picture before! This keeps the book fresh and inviting for the child AND you. (Remember last month’s Blog about reading the same book over and over again!!!!!!)
NEXT MONTH’S BLOG – “WHEN SHOULD YOU REVIEW A BOOK BEFORE READING IT WITH YOUR CHILD?”
Hope you have had a wonderful Spring Break! Thinking of you enduring the end-of-year testing!
Copyright 2014 Linda M. Penn All Rights Reserved