Research-Based Parent Education and Support

Life Lessons Through Picture Books

Posted by on Feb 21, 2012 in Language Development | 0 comments

Life Lessons Through Picture Books

Mo Willems understands children. He knows how to use few words to communicate big life lessons. And he’s funny!


I love to read the Elephant and Piggie books to children, and children never tire of hearing them read aloud. Kids connect with the characters, the situations they find themselves in and the emotions they feel.

The only words printed is the dialogue, as the pictures speak for themselves, conveying a wide range of feelings from joy and excitement to sorrow and disappointment.  The images look deceptively simple. These two friends are honest with each other, treasuring their friendship above all else.

We’ve all suffered that kind of disappointment, everyone from young children to adults.  We know how Piggie feels.

But we also understand how Gerald, the elephant feels, having caused that kind of pain and disappointment.  What I love most, however, is how they comfort each other through the pain.  Despite the pain.

This time, we feel Piggie’s pain of rejection.  How can this end well?

Hurry!  Go to a library and borrow these books!  (My Friend is Sad, and I Love My New Toy, both by Mo Willems – or any of the other books by him).  Read them with your child.  You’ll both thank me, I promise!

PS – as an added bonus, your preschooler will feel quite a boost of confidence as s/he discovers that s/he can “read” whole pages in these books independently after just a few times of hearing them read aloud!

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