Words! Oh, wonderful words.

Serendipity, keen, disparate, convivial, camaraderie, eclectic, gratuitous, inveterate–and the list goes on and on (and on!) 

We are definitely lovers and learners of words ourselves, and we know you are, too!  Word learning is for everyone no matter the age because language comprehension grows throughout our entire lives. In fact, here are some words we recently encountered and deepened our understanding of mendacious, bespoke, ineffable, and aberration. And how about this brand new word we’ve just learned: bildungsroman.

Of course, accessing the power of rare, majestic, and powerful words can open up a world of understanding, opportunity, and possibility for children.

So how do we ensure all children hear, learn, and appreciate a rich, robust vocabulary for themselves?

Well, for starters, did you know that there are almost twice as many rare words in children’s picture books as in the average conversation between two college-educated adults (Hayes & Ahrens, 1988)?  It’s true.

So, leaning on rich picture books for daily interactive read-aloud is one staple you can depend on to do crucial vocabulary-building work.  And to help children develop their own appetite for vocabulary development, books about words (that’s right – words about words) are a powerful path to turning children into logophiles!

If you’re interested in a list of picture books that support and encourage a love of words, that’s exactly what we’ve created in this downloadable booklist. This tool from our online class contains a whole list of books designed to help young word learners deepen their love of language. And here’s a video of us sharing a couple of our favorite books from this list. 

Of course, this is not an exhaustive list of vocabulary-dense picture books. Luckily we live in an age when authors and publishers astound us with new content almost daily. But we hope this list will get you thinking and inspire you to be on the lookout for more logorific (okay, we made that one up!) books like these.

Happy word learning!
❤️ Jan and Kari


Want to learn more about how language comprehension, which includes vocabulary, is an essential ingredient in learning to read? 

In Module 1 of Shifting the Balance: The Online Class,  you can learn how the language processing system works and how reading comprehension relies on our understanding of spoken language. You’ll also explore high-leverage routines for read-aloud and word collecting (among other things) as power tools for language comprehension development. We are starting a new round of the class in a couple of weeks and would love to have you join us.

P.S. Do you have a favorite title that didn’t make the list? We’d love to hear from you! 

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