Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Joy of Pictures

One great thing about coming back from a long vacation is to check out all of the new books that have made their way to the shelves. There is always one unexpected book that appears. This week’s pick? Anouck Boisrobert and Louis Rigaud’s Popville.

Popville is a new intricately designed pop-up book that follows the development of one house in the country. But what happens when more and more buildings surround this little house? My favorite part about Popville is that it’s a wordless picturebook.

Ah, wordless pictures! I love ‘em. But, unfortunately, so many people really don’t understand the essence of them. “They’re not really stories…” “Oh, those are for babies…” “There’s nothing to read in it…” “You can’t do anything with them…” I’ve heard all of the excuses…stop it!

I can write a five page paper just on one page spread, so I’ll just say this: Wordless picturebooks help children to expand their art and story telling skills. It’s not just words that make up great stories, right? It’s also the illustrations. Pictures provide details that words can’t say and also portrays what does not need to be said. One time a three year old, whom I was babysitting for at the time, asked me what a character liked to do for fun. So, we went through the book just looking at the pictures. She had so much fun discovering more about this character. Plus, I’ve heard other parents say wordless picturebooks are great because it’s the child’s turn to read the story to them (even if their child cannot yet read).

More Awesome Wordless Picturebooks
by Suzy Lee
Goodnight Gorilla by Peggy Rathmann
You Can't Take a Balloon into the Museum of Fine Arts by Jacqueline Preiss Weitzman and Robin Glasser
Lion and Mouse (Caldecott Winner 2010) by Jerry Pinkney
Flotsam by David Wiesner
Grey Lady and the Strawberry Snatcher by Molly Bang

No comments: