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Classroom Ideas

Through the use of picturebooks, including postmodern picturebooks, we can excite children about the reading process, the writing process and how these two processes can be linked together to provide meaningful, contextual literary experiences. Kelly Booker


Primary teachers know the importance of well-written illustrated picture books for teaching literacy. 

Now, teachers of older students are discovering the many benefits of including picture books in their teaching.

Through Read- Alouds, Reader’s Theatre, Literature Circles, Author Study, and Writing Workshop, these wonderful books help students become engaged readers and writers.

We invite you to take a look at the following websites and resources. You will find a wealth of practical classroom ideas for teachers to use with students of all ages. 

Always remember that the first read aloud of any picture book is for pure enjoyment and the pleasure of the shared experience. 


Additional Resources

Using Picturebooks to Inspire and Empower Readers and Writers in the Upper Primary Classroom, provides practical examples for using sophisticated picture books with students from grades 4-6, and up. 

Making Writing Real with the Use of Picture Books by Alyson Beecher offers some concrete suggestions for using picture books in multiple ways to enhance instruction.

McCollum-Clark, who is a teacher of future English teachers, is very aware of the time constraints on teachers. She advises teachers to consider using these powerful texts since "...with picture books, you can read the entire work aloud, model the focus you want students to concentrate on, let them explore the craft, have the discussion, and even try it out in their own writing- all in one period!"

Teachers can use picture books as:

  • mentor texts for craft and genre study
  • writing prompts
  • an introduction to complex themes and issues
  • texts for close literary analysis
  • a way into critical literacy

Teach with Picture Books blog by Keith Schoch is another must-read. Keith is an educator, presenter, and advocate for reading. Teachers will find resources and recommendations for using picture books with upper elementary and secondary students. 

Some of Keith’s many topics include using picture books to teach:

  • author’s craft
  • inquiry through nonfiction
  • expository writing
  • figurative language
  • literary devices
  • persuasion

In the Reading section of the Literacy Today website you will find more classroom ideas for teaching reading strategies with illustrated picture books

You can also find ideas for using picture books as models for student writing in the Writing section of the website. 

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