Picture Books discussion

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What age do kids grow out of picture books?

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message 1: by ABC (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:40PM) (new)

ABC (mary6543) | 9 comments I was lurking on another board and a poster said her four year old was growing out of them. Say it isn't so!


message 2: by Mayra (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:41PM) (new)

Mayra | 3 comments The four year old's mother who says her child is outgrowing picture books probably is not familiar with Kevin Henke's books, Keiko Kazsa's, Patricia Polacco, and the list goes on and on. I even have picture books in the fiction section of our library, where second graders and up get their chapter books. Maybe the poster meant "board books".....


message 3: by J-Lynn Van Pelt (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:41PM) (new)

J-Lynn Van Pelt | 2 comments I actually use picture books in my high school English class! The students love them--I've used Cat in the Hat, Anamalia, Kat Kong and Dogzilla, and many, many more.

I think 4 is way too early to grow out of picture books. She just has to find the right ones. There are plenty that are written at a high level and have complex stories that keep young readers engaged.

For example,
An African American Alphabet: D is for Drinking Gourd written by Nancy I. Sanders and illustrated by E.B. Lewis.

Saint George and the Dragon by Margaret Hodges and Trina Schart Hyman.

All of the illustrated Disney collections.

All of Dr. Seuss.

The Discovery of Dragons by Graeme Base

etc., etc., etc.


message 4: by ABC (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:41PM) (new)

ABC (mary6543) | 9 comments Well, this is good to know. I've invested a lot of money in picture books and I plan to reap the returns.

I think I pretty much stopped reading picture books around seven. But even then my books had pictures~~but they were regular chapter books with black and white illustrations.


message 5: by Angie (last edited Aug 25, 2016 01:49PM) (new)

Angie There are "picture books" for all ages. I still read plenty--when you come down to it a good book is a good book period.


message 6: by Val (new)

Val (valz) They don't. I still love picture books. Good illustrations are worth more than 1000 words. And economy of language is something every writer strives for. Every year I buy picture books and give them as gifts to others.


message 7: by Amy (new)

Amy | 3 comments You can never be too old for picture books, they end up appealing to you in a completely different way to when you were a child.

The Babbling Bookcase


message 8: by Christie (new)

Christie Wild (goodreadscomchristiewild) | 1 comments I agree with all above. Maybe the mother of the 4-yr-old doesn't like to read picture books? Just one theory... I'd say a child probably outgrows them at 10. Yes, they still enjoy them, but usually choose chapter books or MG novels by that age. I read to my step-son until he was 10, but I also read chapter books to him. So in one way, never, but how many young adults do you see checking a PB out of any library?


message 9: by Jason (new)

Jason Adams (bartimeus) | 1 comments Actually, most picture books aren't necessarily made to be read BY our little ones. Picture books are made to be read TO them. Look at the vocabulary in a picture book and compare it to an "I Can Read It Myself" (early reader) type of book. You see a BIG difference in the depth of vocabulary used, right? Picture books are made for storytelling. Children learn new words by HEARING how they're pronounced. This is why we read picture books (not early/easy readers) for storytime groups. If you show them the words (and pictures) as you're reading, children can then associate what the word sounds like with what it looks like. Seriously, I don't get how a 4-year old can grow out of picture books? Somebody might want to take that 4-year old to the library and show them the LARGE variety of picture books there are. But once again, when a 4-year old picks out a picture book, it's meant for you, the adult, to read to him/her. The right picture book can entertain an entire class of 1st-graders, 3rd-graders, 6th-graders, middle-schoolers, and even high school students. Believe me, I've read picture books to them all, and they have asked me to come back time and time again. And for those of you who don't think picture books can be just for adults and teens, check out "It's a Book" by Lane Smith. Peace.


message 10: by Suzanne (new)

Suzanne Mulcahy | 2 comments Thank you Jason for reminding me that picture books, of course, were meant to be read to children. Those are the happiest memories that I have with my children, holding them as we read a book together. It truly is a way that children acquire new vocabulary words and makes reading easier for them as they are learning.


message 11: by [deleted user] (new)

I agree with all the posters who say you don't ever grow out of picture books. Readers of any age can enjoy entering the fantasy worlds that are created by good illustrations. (And I should know, I am 82!)


message 12: by Suzanne (new)

Suzanne Mulcahy | 2 comments I agree that the illustrations are so important for the children's books. They bring the story to life. You definitely have wisdom on your side.


message 13: by Michael (new)

Michael Chu (michaelchu) | 2 comments I don't think you can ever be too old to read a picture book. They are fun and ignite the imagination and creativity.


message 14: by Janine (new)

Janine Parsons | 20 comments If adults do not grow out of picture books why should children? I have read the "E" on the call # being referred to as "Everybody" books not "Easy" books. I am promoting that idea :-) Picture books are for everybody.


message 15: by Dagbjort (new)

Dagbjort Asgeirsdottir (dagbjort_asgeirsdottir) | 2 comments Jason wrote: "...Picture books are made for storytelling. Children learn new words by HEARING how they're pronounced. This is why we read picture books (not early/easy readers) for storytime groups. If you show them the words (and pictures) as you're reading, children can then associate what the word sounds like with what it looks like..."

Exactly. Also it is good from time to time when reading to the children, to ask them to imagine the scene without looking at the pictures - to develop their ability to visualize for themselves.

However, when reading to young children, i.e. under the age of four, one should not be too concerned in following the text, but rather discuss the story through the illustrations.

This encourages the children to discuss their own experiences and so they practise using various words they know, as well as new ones from the story.


message 16: by Dagbjort (new)

Dagbjort Asgeirsdottir (dagbjort_asgeirsdottir) | 2 comments John wrote: "I agree with all the posters who say you don't ever grow out of picture books. Readers of any age can enjoy entering the fantasy worlds that are created by good illustrations. (And I should know,..."

I for example write my books for the 4-8 year old range, but believe that Karl Jóhann's watercolours appeal to anyone that likes that kind of picture.

It's nice that there are 'new' talents around like him and Daniela Jaglenka Terrazzini for example.

Too many picture books released today look like they were animated on a computer by a team at Pixar.

When compared to a Sven Nordqvist work, for example, they just lack the warmth and humour that makes readers return again and again to their favourites.


message 17: by Simone (new)

Simone Colwill | 2 comments Interesting comments! I showed a copy of my book to my family doctor (who is in his mid 60's), and he said he wanted to buy a copy for his siblings to help with their elderly parents!! I think adults will sometimes take a message from a picture book more easily than a wordy"how to" book! For details of my book, please see: http://www.sickmom.org


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