More on Picture Books

Thanks for the great comments. It's impossible to get clarity and perspective without... well... perspective. =)

I'm still in the middle of muddling through this issue, but if I had to say right now, I'd say that I think GOOD picture books are good... but that just being a book doesn't make it good. (And really, picture books are books in a very different sense from normal books, anyway...) I'm starting to rethink my "the more the merrier" policy on picture books, and the time we spend with them, but I don't want to throw the baby out with the bathwater.

Patti's comment has me thinking that there's a whole 'nother side to the question though. In addition to thinking about whether to read picture books to my children, and which picture books to read to them, perhaps I ought to be thinking harder about how to read them to my children. Patti writes:
I think there's something to be said for teaching your kids to "read" pictures as well as words--that these are skills that will translate when they watch TV and movies, and that learning to think critically about visual presentation is just as important as learning to criticize words and rhetorical presentation, especially in a world that is more and more dominated by the visual. That said, moderation is definitely key!

This is a very important point. I need to equip my children with the tools to understand images, and not be decieved and manipulated by them.

How do I make sure that I'm training them to understand images, not training them to be dependent upon them?

1 comment:

Patti said...

I tend to work with college kids rather than toddler kids, so I really don't have any substantial answers on this one. But I wonder if its as simple as asking the same questions we do of words of the pictures: how do these pictures work? Why are they the way they are?