Early Morning

  • Wake up. Wander.
  • Take your time.
  • Stop.
  • Ponder.
  • Saunter down the road a while.
  • Pause. Wait.
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  • moment.

Picture Book Text + Art + Design = Whole Book

Mar 29th, 2009 by Dianne | 2

2008 programs 003

Creative Commons License photo credit: San Jose Library

Yesterday I attended the California Literature Council’s Spring Workshop: “I Can Read It By Myself… But Do I Want To? Inspiring Emergent Readers” presented by Megan Lambert of the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. family-vacations-eric-carle-museum-of-picture-book-art-1

Among other things, Lambert discussed  The Whole Book Approach, which she described as a synthesis of Visual Thinking Strategies and the Reggio Emilio model of education.

This interactive strategy suggests that the adult reader act as facilitator rather than merely story teller, using the picture book form as a means of encouraging children to talk about art and design in addition to – and as a means of augmenting – the text.

my new obsession...As a picture book writer, I know that learning how to make  “space” for illustration is essential.  I’m convinced that developing visual thinking and literacy skills is an important tool towards that end.

Creative Commons License photo credit: shioshvili

As a teacher,  I often find myself talking with kids about the marriage of picture book art and text.  But I’ve never quite thought to include students in that discussion to the degree that Lambert suggests.

I’m excited to try the Whole Book Approach when I return to my classroom after the Spring break.

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2 Comments on “Picture Book Text + Art + Design = Whole Book”


  1. Stephanie Parsley said:

    Dianne, Thank you for this! I am eager to try this approach during library story time. I like (in the link, The Whole Story Approach) the notion that pausing to discuss the story during reading actually aids rather than hinders comprehension; this frees me to be a more flexible reader to my students. I’m going to give it a try, and I’m eager to hear how it goes with your class!


  2. Dianne said:

    What was fun was that Megan did some modeling of this strategy, and then for the last 45 minutes of the workshop, we got to practice it in a group.
    She emphasized that this isn’t the *only* way to do a story time, but it’s one way that invites children to participate as co-constructors of meaning, rather than passively, as listeners and watchers.

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