What two wordless picture books did you read? Please share the title and author/illustrators. Share several highlights of your wordless “reading” experience. Why is this type of picture book good for child readers? How is a wordless picture book more challenging than a picture book with text? How might a child’s reading experience with a wordless picture book be different than the experience of reading a book with text?
I was having trouble finding wordless picture books. The first one I saw is called Look! Look! Look!, by Tana Hoban. It’s a photograph picture book, with no plot or story line. It has no words, but it is designed for children to notice details in objects and to be able to define objects based on certain aspects of the object. “Familiar objects are first seen through a cut out hole, then in their entirety,” is the summary in the beginning of the book. Some of the cut outs show fur, then the dog; rods and then the ferris wheel; and red squiggles to spools of yarn. I didn’t even find this book interesting and it didn’t seem like it made sense. The objects were just too random and didn’t fit well together.
The second book I had finally found is called The Red Book, written and illustrated with watercolor by Barbara Lehman. I was so excited when I found this book. It’s a story about a magical book that show this boy a place abroad the seas and actually takes him there! It’s a really cute book and I would recommend it for children. It actually took me a couple of times “reading” it because I was trying to understand the sequence of events and trying to connect the earlier pictures with the next page’s picture and so on; it was a little bit more confusing and challenging without words. I’m sure it would take the same kind of process for a child also to understand the plot. The illustrations were simple, but it was the story that the illustrations told that makes this book interesting. I know if one of my nieces of nephew read this book they would totally elaborate on the story and add all kinds of their own fantasy and detail; it would take much longer to get through a wordless picture book rather than controlled by the pace of the written text.
Children learn visual literacy before they learn verbal literacy. With no words, the pictures get more time and attention to be studied and picked closely of detail. Illustrations usually in picture books can be very complex because they have to get the point across clearly without words. This can be an engaging and challenging experience. They take longer to read and take the skill of connecting events. Picture books have more gaps to fill in by the child, therefore increasing creativity and involvement by the child.