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What do pictures bring to a story? | Reading

Don't skip the pictures in a book! Good readers use illustrations to fill in details about stories. Let's talk about how understanding pictures can help you understand stories even better.

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  • piceratops ultimate style avatar for user JamesBlagg Read Bio
    Is it hard to tell books without pictures?
    (12 votes)
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    • aqualine seedling style avatar for user M&M
      Not necessarily, for the higher-level authors. If you include detailed words and connotations (feelings of words, not necessarily based on their actual meaning), then it could be just as effective as books with pictures. As people get older, their books will contain less and less pictures, and more and more descriptive words. But for younger kids, visual pictures can help a lot!
      (1 vote)
  • aqualine ultimate style avatar for user Simum
    What is mood? How do I identify mood in heavily prose-text?
    (9 votes)
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    • starky sapling style avatar for user Holly Liu
      it is like when the text said "there was a girl turning 6 and she had a birthday party" and when you first think it just is a regular birthday party so that is your mood but when you at the picture your see that they are having a great birthday at a big gym full of fun thing so now your mood changed and now you don't think it is like a regular birthday party, you will think like that girl is having a lot of fun jumping and playing in the gym
      (3 votes)
  • blobby green style avatar for user aiden.fidler
    Sometimes its hard to understand the book without pictures, Are you making a book without pictures?
    (5 votes)
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  • blobby green style avatar for user nadiiag
    Q: Why some books don’t have illustrations?
    Please answer this question.
    Thank you so much!
    (2 votes)
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    • hopper cool style avatar for user Seed Something
      Illustrations are more common in books for young readers.

      Pictures are often added to help early readers learn new words, build their imaginations, and understand a story better by showing them examples of what they just read.

      So it's useful for earlier readers to look at illustrations and compare them to the text.

      As we become better at reading, we gain a larger vocabulary; we read smoother with more immediate understanding, and our stories become more detailed through descriptive words, (words that describe: colors, textures, behavior, appearances, etc…).

      So, in many books for practiced readers, illustrations become unnecessary, because as we build our reading level higher, we are able to imagine the scenes from the story ourselves, like seeing a movie in our minds as we read.

      So, keep practicing!
      There are many fun books to read, with great adventures to enjoy!
      (6 votes)
  • starky seed style avatar for user Shafer Knowles
    The great Charles Dickens put pictures in most of his books he did so because he found that it helps to tell more of the story but the question is dose it help everyone else or just me?
    (3 votes)
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  • duskpin ultimate style avatar for user Nita Sudhir
    I usually look a the pictures they help me understand the story better.
    (2 votes)
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  • winston default style avatar for user Sub2ItsPawzy
    Did the first ever book had pictures in them then? If not, what was the first picture book?
    (2 votes)
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  • piceratops seedling style avatar for user Mia Schoenemann
    i don't really like Fairy tales but I'm a girl but it just does not catch my eye 🤔
    (2 votes)
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  • starky sapling style avatar for user ElizabethM
    what about the lamp david?
    (2 votes)
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  • piceratops tree style avatar for user RobloxLegend
    why do you say david out all the time
    (2 votes)
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Video transcript

- [David] Hello, readers. Let's talk about illustrations. When you're reading a story and it has pictures in it, don't skip them. You could be missing out on a wealth of information and added detail. Good readers use pictures to help them understand stories even better. And let's talk about why that is. Pictures can help describe the mood of a story or how a story makes you feel. If I'm telling a story about a girl and her dad going for a walk in the woods, but then when you see an image of those woods and the trees are all spindly and black and the sky is a leaden gray, what does that tell you about the mood of the story? It's grim, it's creepy, it's a scary walk in some scary woods. The way the story feels can be expressed through the illustrations. Pictures can help describe the events of a story. Maybe the story's a little unspecific, say, for instance, we're talking about Little Red Riding Hood, and it says, "The big bad wolf swallows Granny up "and disguises himself as her." But it doesn't go into further detail. Well, what does that mean? What does his disguise look like? And we can look at an illustration like this and say: Okay, that big bulge in the wolf's stomach is where Granny is, and the wolf's got on Granny's bonnet and little glasses and all. So that's his disguise. It is not very convincing to me, but what do I know? And pictures can help fill in important details. I can look at a character's expression as I'm reading to help me answer questions I might have about how that character feels. What's going on there with the face of the wolf? Is that a smile, is that a grimace? The text can give me a clue, but then the picture can tell me the rest of the story. We can use our knowledge of how real life people are or behave to help understand pictures in a story. The wolf, for example, the face he's making with his eyes narrowed and his brows knit like that and that smile creeping across his features, to me, that's a scheming face. That's the face someone makes when they're talking to themselves and planning something nasty. He's also putting on Granny's bonnet and glasses. We know these aren't things wolves are known to wear. And he seems very pleased with himself. So he's eaten Granny, he's putting on her clothes. He seems really happy about it, but in an evil way, and we can use that to inform the way we read the story. This wolf isn't satisfied with eating an old woman. He wants to eat her grandkid for dessert. So greedy, what a greedy, mean little beast! The point is that pictures in stories are really useful. Read them the same way you read words. Understanding images will make you a stronger reader, and if you can learn that, why then, you can learn anything, David out.