Reading wordless picture books presents an opportunity to evaluate and encourage young children's comprehension and meaning-making skills. It also introduces them to the concept of narrative even when they are not yet reading. Although many adults appreciate having the structure of a written story, a wordless picture book allows for greater flexibility. When discussing the pictures, vocabulary complexity may be adapted for the individual child as there are endless numbers of words available with the freedom of a wordless book.
For further reading on the power of wordless picture books, we recommend "Before Words: Wordless Picture Books and the Development of Reading in Young Children" by Judith T. Lysaker. This book is available in the Grant Wood AEA Media Center.
Below are some articles recommended by Grant Wood AEA Consultant Kelli Robertson
- Reading Rockets: Exploring Wordless Picture Books
- International Literacy Association: Because Pictures Say a Thousand Words
- Playful Learning: The Power of Wordless Picture Books
- Text Optional, by Jennifer Gibson: ALSC
- There’s a Book for That!: AshaWire
Now that we've established how useful wordless picture books can be, let's share a few book recommendations for your home or classroom! Here are a few new and/or updated classroom sets of wordless picture books to use with children. Educators can reserve them and we will deliver to your school!
- Wordless stories set 1 - 25 copy set (187256) PBoxed Book Set
- Wordless stories set 2 - 15 copy set (204364) PBoxed Book Set
- Wordless stories set 3 - 15 copy set (204365) PBoxed Book Set
Finally, here are some wordless EBooks in MackinVIA. These are available to Grant Wood AEA area students anytime/anywhere.
- The Brain storm
- Dino and Pablo's prehistoric games
- I walk with Vanessa : a story about a simple act of kindness
- The Numbers
- The Red book
- Train stop
Fun Fact: May is Better Speech and Hearing month! Click here for a few more resources from the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.