However, that being said...we do want young children to enjoy books. We want them to be confident and comfortable handling them and we hope that they are drawn to their beauty, excitement, and develop an interest in books.
During one of our small group learning times, we asked a few students to spend some time reading in our book nook. We asked students who are not usually drawn to that area naturally to spend some time reading. Our hope was that we would support them in becoming familiar with handling and interacting with books.
We spent time in our school library selecting some books that we thought would appeal to the students that we were going to invite to the book nook area. We collected a variety of books both fiction and nonfiction with lots of different topics.
- "You can tell the story by looking at the picture"
- "You can make up any story you want"
- "The pictures help you"
- "You have to look closely at the picture"
It was so powerful to watch the transformation in this student and the other students. It taught us as educators how valuable it is to be aware of what the children are saying, doing and how they are interacting with materials. We feel as though this experience was such a clear example of responsive teaching that the new curriculum document in Ontario invites.
We didn't plan a unit on "wordless books", we saw a need and we reflected on why it was happening. We thought about different ways to approach, teach, and support the concept in small group, whole group and in the context of the students play.