When we think of books for little ones, what comes into our minds are bright pictures and words written in big letters. What if we told you that books minus the words (i.e., wordless books) are actually best when it comes to teaching your tiny bookworm how to read?
Wordless books: Their amazing benefits
Encouraging your kids to ‘read’ wordless books can help in the development of their literacy in a variety of ways.
Sarah Lin, a mum to a cute toddler son, gives him a lot of picture books.
She says, “I feel this is a great way to allow kids to see and comprehend. My son can not only identify and name the objects, colours and animals in his books but at times also relates his day-to-day experiences with what he’s seeing in the book. The other day, he saw a red triangle and he identified it as a slice of watermelon. I think his cognitive skills are developing as he reads more wordless books.”
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Here’s why you must encourage your child to read wordless books:
1. They understand the mechanism of books:
When you encourage your toddler to read wordless books at a young age, it helps them understand how a book works.
For example, they learn to distinguish between the front and back covers.
They also learn that the inside pages are different than the covers. That helps them understand more about reading from front to back, left to right and top to bottom.
2. It develops their literacy skills:
Children can develop their skills in listening and comprehension through wordless books, as well as learn how to interpret visual images.
Understanding the storytelling structure – that is, characters, cause and effect, conflict and resolution – also takes place through picture books. Children also get an understanding of how a narrative flows from beginning to middle, and end.
3. It builds their vocabulary and verbal skills:
Picture books allow children to identify and name objects, people, places, animals, actions and other such things from their day-to-day life.
They also learn to narrate stories using pictorial cues. Once they start reading more complex stories it becomes easier for them to understand. Furthermore, this may also inspire them to write themselves.
Image source: iStock
4. They start feeling self-confident:
As children progress in reading wordless books, they feel proud of their achievements like having finished a favourite book or understanding the story without adult help.
Once they feel that they are good at it, they enjoy this activity all the more. This is sure to inculcate a love for books and reading in them.
5. It helps learning-challenged kids in many ways:
Wordless books or picture books are a great tool for kids with developmental and learning difficulties, as they don’t tie down the child to a prescribed set of words or ideas. Instead, the child is allowed to use their imagination to create the story… and this helps them forge ahead with their development.
Mums, next time you are shopping for your little one, don’t forget to add a wordless book to your list.