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Reading Picture Books with Children    by Megan Dowd Lambert Amazon.com order for
Reading Picture Books with Children
by Megan Dowd Lambert
Order:  USA  Can
Charlesbridge, 2015 (2015)
Hardcover, e-Book
* * *   Reviewed by Bob Walch

As you'll discover when you read Megan Dowd Lambert's Reading Picture Books with Children, a memorable storytime is more than just reading aloud with feeling and showing the illustrations that accompany the picture book.

In this book Lambert explains her Whole Book Approach that reshapes storytime by involving the child in the process and showing the youngster how to think with his or her eyes.

Encouraging the child's active participation in the reading of a picture book is the key to making this passive experience a more active experience.
'The Whole Book Approach simply stresses inviting children to react to the whole book its art, design, production, paratextual and textual elements in ways that feel natural and enriching to them,' writes the author.

She continues, 'This method requires that storytime leaders, be they teachers, librarian, parents, or other adults engaged in reading picture books with children immerse themselves in understanding the picture book as a multimodal art form (one that uses both visual and verbal modes of communication) in order to consider how not only text and illustrations but all design and production elements might contribute to the shared reading.'

As you read this helpful guide you'll learn how the size and shape of a picture book influence how we perceive its content and how the jacket, end-papers, and front-matter pages can set the stage for the story that follows.

Of course, typography and page design are crucial elements of any picture book and they are discussed at length.

Once you finish this book, you'll approach story time in an entirely new way. By making it an interactive experience that engages the child and makes him/her part of the process of reading, the book experience will become far more meaningful and pleasurable. Hopefully it will start the youngster on the path to becoming a lifelong reader as well.

Needless to say, anyone involved in educating or raising children and those who aspire to create children's literature will want to read this book and apply some, if not all, of the ideas the author presents.

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