Why Picture Books Are Important by April Pulley Sayre

by Dianne on November 25, 2013

April Pulley Sayre book cover

A picture book is a delicious form. There’s just enough time for a journey, a concept, a bit of push and pull of language. A picture book can refresh you, teach you, comfort you, and help you set sail into real life with inspiration. Fiction or nonfiction, a picture book gives you fresh eyes to see the world, to love nature, embrace your family, and perhaps tackle something tough in yourself or the outside world.

Picture books also feed and intrigue our visual learners and young scientists. Noticing—picking out detail, repetition, structure, and form in a photo or painting—excites our brains in a way that language alone cannot. Picture books celebrate art and give room for color, line, light, and shadow to jump-rope with words and language play.

Of course, how we read picture books—together with loving grandparents, parents, teachers, and librarians—makes picture books a beautiful kind of bonding. Sharing the story, language, and visuals of picture books cements us like the chorus of a song sung in unison.

Great picture books are deep in surprising ways because they grow in meaning with repeated readings. Those with tight, lyrical language linger in your mind and you carry them around all day. Those with great images send you out to see echoes of their shapes in the world. Picture books may not fit inside your pocket or your palm like a cell phone but they fit inside your brain!

April Pulley Sayre headshot

About April Pulley Sayre
April Pulley Sayre is the author of over 55 nature books for children and adults. Her read-aloud nonfiction books are known for their lyricism and scientific precision. She authored Geisel Honor book Vulture View and four ALA Notable books including One Is a Snail, Ten Is a Crab and Stars Beneath Your Bed. Sayre is author/photographer of Rah, Rah, Radishes: a Vegetable Chant and Let’s Go Nuts! Seeds We Eat. Visit her on the web at www.aprilsayre.com.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Belinda brock November 25, 2013 at 12:14 am

Beautifully expressed!

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danielle @ this picture book life November 25, 2013 at 12:33 pm

This first paragraph is such a perfect description of PBs! Delicious indeed. 🙂

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WriterSideUp November 26, 2013 at 1:48 am

One of the best things about Picture Book Month is there are so many wonderful posts. They are truly eloquent because they’re written by—whom? None other than—WRITERS! 🙂 Thank you for another beauty 🙂

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