Friday, April 17, 2015

Reading Picture Books And More

If you follow the group called The Reading Raccoons on Facebook (managed by Tanu Shree Singh), you definitely know that Tanu is a wealth of information - on books, authors, reading and more. We get a glimpse into her world of books through this post on RivoKids :

We read books. Secretly. No, I am not talking about the Fifty Shades of Grey. We read picture books and enjoy them immensely. They are teenagers and there is a limit to which you can challenge the teen boundary of cool and not cool. Reading picture books falls on the opposite side of the boundary. 

 I have two bookworms at home that are a perfect example. There has never been a transition; there only have been additions. So our shelves are full of picture books, beginner chapter books, middle reads, and YA, absolutely not in that order.

Picture books are not just a rung of a reading ladder. There are some excellent ones out there which are sufficiently layered to be enjoyed by all ages. The boys loved chewing on the board books when they were babies. As toddlers, the pictures told a different story each time they turned the pages. The book also became a weapon in case of a disagreement. By the time they were in first grade, they started sticking their chest out in a bid to look older. The picture books started gathering dust. 'It is for babies!' I was told. I continued picking the ones that I fell in love with anyway.

In the last few years, they have come back. They read everything, from blood curdling YA reads like 'The Bunker Diary' to their all time favourite 'Where the Wild Things Are.' The only difference is, we have the pact. They are not ready enough to go against the tide and declare to the peers that they love picture books. So I do not egg them to come out of the closet. I sit there with them and ogle at the goodness between the pages. We discuss how the illustrations transform from the beginning to the end. They point out the nuances they spot, the character that appears on each page despite her not being a part of the narrative yet, the way the text swirls around, and the tiny poster they noticed in the background when they read the book n+1th time. These books are a journey for them - with each extra mile, they discover something new.

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