There is often the misconception that just because young children are unable to read the words in a picture book that they should not be given the opportunity to have ago at reading it themselves. Allowing a child to look at the pictures and talking to you about what they see is a beautiful way of storytelling.
Picture Walks enable a child to "read" the story. They learn to understand that pictures convey meaning and have a sequence that makes sense. The pictures create a beginning, a middle and an end to a story. Eventually, when children learn to begin to read the text, they are encouraged to use picture cues to decode unfamiliar words. We need to expose them to illustrations before text so as to make meaning of what they are learning to read.
Watch and listen to how this little girl reads this picture book using only the illustrations. She is so pleased with herself for reading me the book without actually reading the text itself. Watch also, as she is learning to turn the pages, one at a time and look at the illustrations in order. All of these things, lead to successful and enjoyable reading.
Our goal at Tightrope Learning is to help children fall in love with books...to look at and appreciate the beauty of illustrations and the enjoyment of retelling a story all by themselves.
Thank you to Aliyah and her mum for allowing me to record and post her "reading" this book to me today for all of you to share.