Wordless books are so cool.
They tell a story with pictures rather than words. They let your child come up with his own story. The pictures are usually vivid and detailed, which helps with focus and concentration.
When there are no words to go with the pictures, your child is more likely to notice details. Your child gets a better understanding of plot when she has to visually see the beginning, middle, and end of the story. The possibilities for imagination are endless.
How cool is it to make up your own story to go with the pictures?
I loved cuddling up with my boys when they were very small and watching them gaze at wordless books. And as they grew, I used wordless books as teaching tools.
How to use wordless books
There are so many ways to utilize these amazing books for learning.
For toddlers, wordless books can be used as a precursor to reading. Before you start letter recognition, phonics, and sight words, let them look at books that don’t have any words. Compare those books with books that do have words. Talk about the differences.
For preschoolers, they can encourage higher thinking by providing opportunity for open-ended questions. (What if cats could fly?) They can learn to recognize emotion through body language and facial expression. They can begin to express themselves through their own story-telling.
For older kids, wordless books are a fabulous lead-in to creative writing. When I was a librarian, wordless books were among my favorite tools to use with my writing group, and I totally stole the idea to use in my homeschool. And I mean yeah, I know, I’m a born writer, but I crush hard on coming up with your own words for a book. I’ve never met a child who didn’t enjoying doing so.
Our favorite wordless books
You can see where this one is going. What a great addition to nature study! Use this book to find things to look for outside or to write a story wrapping up a nature walk.
Studying the ocean? Planning a beach field trip? This book is a perfect addition. You could use it for a ship study, a Viking study, an Age of Exploration study… Yeah, this one is versatile.
This one is perfect for a weather study or a rainy day. Plus, just look at the beautiful colors!
Oh me. Oh my. This lovely book, about a girl who uses a red marker to create her own adventure, is an ideal creative writing lesson. Check out Becker’s two other glorious wordless books, Quest and Return.
Because Mercer Mayer. And frog studies, pond studies, and even dog studies.
These illustrations are incredible. Ponds, frogs, toads, turtles, birds, fantastic journeys… This one is full of good stuff. Have fun.
Grab some wordless books and let your littles’ imaginations run wild. My favorite part of using them as creative writing prompts is to compare what the boys come up with. Every child thinks uniquely, even when looking at the same pictures, and it’s so fun to get a glimpse of that.
Let me know how it turns out.