Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday
Nonfiction Picture Book Wednesday is hosted by Kid Lit Frenzy and was started to help promote the reading of nonfiction texts. Most Wednesdays, we will be participating and will review a nonfiction text (though it may not always be a picture book).
Be sure to visit Kid Lit Frenzy and see what other nonfiction books are shared this week!
Photos Framed: A Fresh Look at the World’s Most Memorable Photographs
Author: Ruth Thomson
Published August 5th, 2014 by Candlewick Press
Goodreads Summary: Portrait. Nature. Art. Documentary. A look at some of the world’s most iconic photographs invites viewers to focus on the medium’s place in art and history.
Photographs can be beautiful or harrowing, honest or manipulative, dramatic or comforting. Photos Framed explores twenty-seven of the most important and vivid photos taken over the medium’s history, from a formal portrait of Louis Daguerre taken in 1844 to a candid shot of a Cuban girl and her doll in 2011. Readers are invited to use their powers of observation to zoom in on photographic elements, blow up details of the subject matter, think about the big picture, and pan out on the photographer. Photos Framed will open viewers’ eyes to the art of photography and its power to tell a story.
Kellee’s Review and Teachers’ Tools for Navigation: This book is phenomenal. It takes art and history and combines them into an epic look at the history of photography and the world. I am definitely going to use this book in my classroom next year. Each photograph includes information about the photo, information about the photographer, three photo thoughts questions, a “blow up” section that looks at a certain part of the photograph, a “zoom in” which looks at elements of the photograph, and a quote from the photographer. This information is fascinating, but it is just an introduction to the time period of the photo, what makes the photo a true piece of art and who the photographer is. I would love to see students delve deeper into each of these photos using this book as an amazing jumping off point. The book also gives a nice lesson at the beginning about the different types of photographs. I can definitely see myself using that in my journalism class when we look at photography.
Ricki’s Review and Teachers’ Tools for Navigation: Kellee’s review is spot-on. This book forces readers to zoom in on elements of photography and then zoom out on each photograph to provide context and history. I spent a long time on each page and appreciated the way the author took in the beauty and complexity of each photograph. Teachers often do a lot of close reading in the classroom. I’d love to use this text used as a parallel for close reading. The teacher and students would spend time zooming in and zooming out on the photograph. Then, we could look at a class text and do the same with the words on the page. It teaches students how important it is to look carefully at the minutia of the world but also consider the bigger picture. This book inspired me to want to pair up with the school’s photography teacher to analyze the text in an interdisciplinary way. Perhaps, photography students would be inspired by the book and students could select a photograph for a creative writing assignment.
Discussion Questions: Each photograph has discussion questions that help the reader analyze the photograph.
The photograph: …Ebbets’s breathtaking photograph celebrates these tough men, taking their lunch break on a crossbeam on the unfinished sixty-ninth floor of the RCA Building, part of Rockefeller Center…
The photographer: Ebbets was a fearless photographer who even risked taking aerial shots lying on the tail of a plane…
Photo thoughts: Where do you think the photographer was positioned to take this shot?…” (p. 38-39)
Read This If You Loved: Humans of New York by Brandon Stanton, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs, Books about Photography