These Blocks Are Building a Reader

Posted on: 2 October 2011

A Few Blocks by Cybèle Young

Illustrations in children’s books can not only depict what’s happening, they can also encourage readers to use their imagination and engage in creating a story in many ways. One way is to have minimal or no words and use illustrations to nudge young readers into developing the storyline (A Ball for Daisy, by Chris Raschka). In other books, there is a written story and the illustrations encourage a deeper look and interpretation of the mood and perspectives of the characters.

A Few Blocks falls into the second category; it’s a book that, after an initial read, Elizabeth picked up herself and began to read out loud! (Hurray!) She was keenly interested in how the illustrations worked to show both what the characters are thinking and feeling, and their “real” surroundings. We know she is interested in art and drawing and we have been encouraging this skill with our activities and her camps.

In the book, two children are on a journey, with Viola encouraging her reluctant younger brother Ferdie with all of a child’s favourite pretend scenarios. Where do they end up, and how does Viola keep her own spirits up? You can use your imagination, or pick this one up to find out! Enjoy!


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