- wordless big books
- pictures from magazines
- tempera paints, brushes and paper
- sentence strips
- plastic magnifying glasses
- clipboards, paper, markers
- creative thinking
- story structure
- making choices
- gaining meaning from symbols
- using print to communicate
Read pictures with children. You might choose a wordless big book, pictures from magazines, or photos of children working and playing together. Model reading a picture by telling a story about the picture. Let children know how the story begins and ends, and describe the theme of the story.
Invite children to create their own picture for story telling. Ask them to think of a story, then paint a picture of that story. Some children will talk about their story while they paint, others will paint first and then tell their story. When finished, children can share their paintings with the others.
Take dictation as children tell their story. Write what children say on a sentence strip. Attach the strip to the bottom of their pictures. Encourage children to write their own story sentence using invented spelling.
Create a "Story Gallery." Mount children's story pictures for others to see. Make sure each child's story picture and sentence strip are displayed. Write an explanation of children's story pictures so that children's families can share in the experience. Describe how children learned to read pictures, then made their own story pictures.
Remember: Five- and 6-year-olds are just beginning to learn to tell stories from pictures. First, they will simply name the things they see. As they grow and experience storytelling, they'll advance to talking about what happened first and how the story ended.
Send a note home asking families to snuggle up close with their children and share a wordless storybook together. Parents and children can look at the pictures, talk about them, and discuss questions, such as "What will happen next?"
Curriculum Connection: SCIENCE
Take a nature walk. Give each child a clipboard equipped with several sheets of paper and a marker. Take along a science kit or two. In the science kit, place several plastic magnifying glasses, tweezers, plastic baggies for collecting objects, and plastic collecting boxes. Observe plant and animal life as you walk. Stop. Ask children to sketch their observations on their clipboards. Back in the classroom, children can paint their science observations and tell another story.