Using Picture Books With Older Readers

I have long wanted to add a section on my blog for using picture books with middle and high school students. I have finally made that happen! Though I have accumulated lots of lesson ideas with picture books over the years, they take me several days at a time to write them out. I’m hoping to add a new picture book with lesson ideas for older readers each month. Be sure to check back regularly or subscribe for updates.

Every picture book lesson will include a downloadable booktalk for libraries, middle school English curriculum connections (because I taught English!), and at least three other ideas for using the picture book with older students.

Armchair Travelers Unite! Challenge Your Students to Read Around the World
This fall, I am challenging my middle schoolers to read picture books representing different countries. This is a project I’ve been thinking about doing for years, and it’s finally happening! This post, the first in a two-part series, focuses on why I’m doing this, what kinds of books I’ve ordered, how I set it up, and what I plan to do to promote the challenge.


Four Feet, Two Sandals (Williams, Mohammed, Chayka)
Includes lessons for English, humanities/global perspectives, library, PE, and photography.


The Last Stop on Market Street (De la Pena)
Includes lessons for English, art, library, social studies, and photography.


Rules of Summer (Tan)
Includes lessons for English/writing, library, art, social studies, sociology, and political science.


Twenty-One Elephants and Still Standing (Price) AND/OR Twenty-One Elephants (Bildner)


The Whispering Town (Elvgren)
Lessons for English, library, social studies, and art. Also includes a booktalk, paired picture books and novels, and documentary clips.
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