It breaks our hearts just a little bit when we hear about parents abandoning picture books too soon. There’s a misconception that once kids can read independently and start to devour easy readers and chapter books that they should leave behind picture books forever. There’s also another misconception that picture books are for babies. We’d guess that many of these well-meaning parents just simply don’t know about the breadth of strong picture books that exist for older readers and how these can further the literacy of their children. Don’t get us wrong—we love seeing little bears reading books that challenge and further the development of their vocabularies and critical-thinking skills. What we’re saying is that picture books can do that, too!
We’ve compiled a very short list to show some of the older picture book options that are out there and the potential benefits of reading of these with older kids. And there are so many more!
Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty, illustrated by David Roberts is listed for ages 5-7. This book inspires children to dream big and teaches little bears one of life’s most important lessons: You can only fail if you quit. There’s also a great STEM angle here which homeschoolers and educators will appreciate.
The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales by Jon Scieszka, illustrated by Lane Smith is for ages 5-8. Honestly, kids will want to pick this book up just for the title. But inside is a delightful parody of fairy tales and fairy-tale book design. Guaranteed giggles for the whole family! After reading, have your little create his own fairy tale parody.
We Are the Ship by Kadir Nelson is geared toward ages 8-12 and tells the story of Negro League baseball. This is a hefty, 96-page volume with breath-taking artwork from a renowned artist which brings to life a fascinating piece of sports history.
Finding Winnie: The True Story of the World’s Most Famous Bear by Lindsay Mattick, illustrated by Sophie Blackall is for ages 3-7. This is the true story about the bear who inspired Winnie the Pooh. It’s also a #1 New York Times Bestseller and Winner of the 2016 Caldecott Medal.
We hope you’ve gotten a taste of what the picture book world has to offer. There’s more to picture books than meets the eye, isn’t there?
Book Bears Read!