Sometimes, getting your students to think outside the box can be a bit of a challenge. Perspective is hard for all of us, and having little prior knowledge or life experience can make it even more challenging. These next few books are some of my new favorite finds for "thinking Big".
If the World Were a Village - By David J. Smith and Illustrated by Steve Adams
"If the World Were a Village" is one of my new found favorites. It takes BIG concepts and relates them to easy to visualize representations. It's comparisons of the amount of water on the planet honestly shocked me as did the pictoral representation of the division of wealth and food on the planet. The pictures are fabulous and the ideas are transformative even for us adults. It is full of excellent thoughts and ideas and will be a great book to use for transformation and questioning!
I Wonder - By Annaka Harris and Illustrated by John Rowe
"I Wonder" is another great book full of big ideas. It introduces Big Ideas but leaves them with a lot of unanswered questions (and room to discover their own). This book does a great job of introducing big concepts and teaching students to wonder. The little girl in the story asks a lot of questions and her mom does an excellent job fostering the wonder. This would be a great introduction to "Questioning" and ends with the question "What do you wonder about?". I can see a lesson forming already with a great lead in to possible research, classroom discussions and brainstorming! The illustrations in this book are incredible and a picture walk through this book would bring some incredible predictions. This really is a great addition to any classroom library.
If You Find a Rock - By Peggy Christian and Photographs by Barbara Hirsch Lember
"If You Find a Rock" is a great introduction into seeing more than what is right in front of you. It's descriptions of different kinds of rocks is imaginative and the photographs which accompany it are beautiful. This book is full of whimsy and imagination and I love the idea of introducing the students to opening their eyes to the possibilities of something as simple as a stone. Taking your students on a rock hunt after reading this story would bring a whole world of possibilities. The writing activity afterwards following this same pattern would also be a great way of extending their thinking! I know I will now look at rocks differently after reading this story!!
All four of these books are excellent books for teaching questioning. The Big Ideas leave lots and lots of room for questions and they are great springboards for other lessons whether it be research or writing.
I'm Bryn, teacher, mom, book lover, athlete. I am passionate about literacy, collaborative teaching and finding new and innovative ways to engage & motivate all kids. I hope you find something that speaks to you here on my blog and would love to hear from you too!