The Power of a Picture Book

I have and always will be a lover of books; books of any kind but I have a particular affinity for picture books. They open the door to a world of imagination, curiosity and adventure and give children the viusals they need to escape to far away lands. What more could you ask for?

I use picture books in my classroom with all age groups. I have 1st to 6th in my ASD class but have taught almost every age level in mainstream and SET also and have always used picture books when planning thematically.

I believe that all children can use picture books to develop their oral, reading and writing skills as well as communication and language skills.

Over on my Instagram page @asdcreationstation I have started a new segment on my IGTV where I read a picture book, just as I would in my class (although unfortunately at this time I have no audience to answer my questions as I read and work on developing vocabulary and understanding, but that time will come again soon!) At the end of the reading I give a range of written, oral and creative activities that children can do, all in relation to the text I have just read.

Today’s story was Saturday Night at the Dinosaur Stomp, a favourite of some of the boys in my own class. Feel free to go watch it over on my page and then here is a list of activities you could complete at home.

1. Draw your favourite dinosaur and describe him orally or why not try to write some sentences or a descriptive paragraph using interesting adjectives.

2. Write a list of ingredients to make your own Swamp water punch. Use commas in your list if you can. Maybe you could even write out a recipe for me to follow. Remember to include a list of ingredients and number or bullet point your procedure or instructions.

3. Can you brush your teeth as well as these dinosaurs? Make a video to show me how or teach a younger sibling. Can you write instructions for me to follow and remember to draw pictures to help me at each stage.

4. Can you find and use recyclable materials to create your own musical instruments? Create your own song and write some lyrics to go along with it. Send me a video of you playing them.

5. Can you list 10 words that rhyme with the following words: spike, horn, night, tails, floor and splash? Maybe try to write your own rhyming couplets or a poem about The Dinosaur Stomp.

6. Can you create your own Dinosaur Stomp dance and teach it to somebody at home? Maybe you could teach it to us too when we get back to school!

7. Do some research on one or more of the following topics: volcanoes, earthquakes or dinosaurs. What have you learned about them. Create an oral or written report. I can’t wait to read it.

8. Can you create your own volcano? What happens when you add vinegar to baking soda, or Mentos mints to Cola? Experiment!

9. Write a recount or a diary entry telling me all about the last party or celebration you went to. you can be an author and write about it and draw a picture too so you can be an illustrator too.

10. Write your own version of Dinosaur stomp, maybe change the animals or events to create your own story.

11. Write a story about a dinosaur who has gone to live in your school for the next couple of weeks. I wonder what adventures they will get up to.

12. Create and invitation to the next Dinosaur Stomp party. Remember to include who it is for, where and when the party will be on and sign off at the end.

13. Create your own 3D dinosaur out of junk modelling material, playdough or Lego. Role play the events of this story.

These are some of the ideas that I have shared with some of the children in my own class. They have access to watch me read the story on our Class Seesaw App and then can pick and choose 1 or 2 activities to complete each day next week as part of their lessons.

By creating activities like these we are hitting so many curricular areas but in a fun and purposeful way. In these 13 activities we have links to English (oral, reading and writing), life skills, fine motor skills, PE and gross motor skills, Art and Design and SESE (History, Geography and Science) all in one so a handy way to incorporate all areas in a cross curricular way.

Feel free to use them with your own classes or in your homes and check out my Instagram IGTV @asdcreationstation

Hope you have enjoyed reading this and hopefully getting some use out of it.

Lisa xx

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