Disclosure: I received this complimentary product through the Homeschool Review Crew.
Did you know that a book without words could be lots of fun and teach critical thinking skills? I was unsure exactly what to expect when we reviewed the Tell Me a Story book from The Critical Thinking Co.™.
What is Tell Me a Story?
Tell Me a Story is a book that includes two different stories told through pictures. Each picture is a full-page illustration, and on the page opposite the illustration, there are questions about the image. The book is designed for students in grades PreK to first grade to work through with a parent or teacher.
Some of the questions are very factual. An example would be, “Name two things that are in the ocean.” Other questions ask the child to give an opinion such as, “If Seagull could talk, what would it say to Mouse?” Some questions ask the child to predict what will happen next. An example of a prediction question is, “What do you think will come out of the bottle?”.
At the end of each story, some questions have the child think back over the entire story and not just the current page. One example is, “What were the four wishes Genie granted the Mouse?” Some open-ended questions about what could happen next encourage the child to continue imagining the story. For example, “What will happen to the Genie in the bottle?”
Each story is about fifty pages total, with half of those being pictures, so there is a lot covered in each story. We went through and did a few pages at a time, and my son enjoyed it. It would be too much to try to cover in one session.
The Stories in Tell Me a Story
The first story tells about a mouse that is having a day at the beach. While he is there, he finds a bottle with a Genie and gets four wishes. The story continues showing his adventures with the wishes. The second story is about a dog and a crow who are friends. They enjoy helping others, and it takes you through many different situations where they help those around them.
Overall, I thought this was a fun way to encourage critical thinking and observation skills. I loved hearing what my son had to say about each picture and how it made him imagine what might be happening. I primarily used this with my second-grade son and thought it was a good fit. It is a good tool for my three-year-old to start introducing him to the ideas and observation, but he would not be able to answer all of the questions. I recommend this for PreK through second grade or older students who need to review observation or prediction skills. We did it one-on-one, but it could also be used as a family or class, and students could compare their ideas.