Picture books for kids are unique because these are books where drawings, sketches and art speak more than words do. Reading picture books to and with kids means not only enjoying drawings, but also making sense of them and sometimes interpreting it in different ways too. And when we say picture books for children, it’s not always just the tiny tots. The slightly older kids like them too. This is because books with illustrations appear to be more fun. As you read through this article, you will find out how you can engage the little ones more and also get more out of such books.
Unlike us adults who will read the synopsis of the book, the fist things that grabs a child’s attention are the pictures. So when you go book-buying, do involve the kids to choose their books. Sit with them while they take picture-walks through the book by leafing through the pages. And once they begin asking you about those pictures or trying to describe the sketches themselves, you know that they have been ‘hooked’.
Bring Art to Life
As you read through the books, try and bring the characters to life. Impart in them some characteristics that your child can identify with. For example, the caterpillar who loved eating yummy food, the boy who always wanted to play, the bird who rolled in the mud, the doll who loved fancy dresses etc. When you help kids to connect with the characters the books become more real to them.
Picture books need not always mean a fictional one. You can even open those that deal with nature, history and science. Read beforehand what’s written about it. When you sit with your child, concentrate more on the picture and tell them about it in a more fun filled story telling mode. For example; about when talking about a historical fort, tell them more trivia rather than just the dates in history. You can do this with magazines and newspaper pictures too – read the headlines, the catch phrases, tell them what a chart means etc. As for fictional stories, they can provide a lot of knowledge too. For example a farm trip or even a journey to the moon leaves room for a lot of ‘explorations’.