June 7 – National Drawing Day

Happy Drawing Day!

(or as some call it… Pencil Day)

This is a day I wish I could call my own. I wish I could pick up a pencil and draw something more than a stick figure. I can get by in a friendly game of Pictionary, but I need some really perceptive teammates to make it work.

As many of you know, I am ‘drawn’ into a picture book first and foremost because of the illustrations. I admit it, I do judge a book by its cover.  Of course I love a great story, it satisfies my heart and soul. But oh, the artwork! For today’s celebration I’m going to present a few wordless picture books so we can wholeheartedly participate in National Drawing Day and read our books without text. I have chosen a few books ranging in publication date from 1978 to 2013.


Journey by Aaron Becker (2013)

This book is not only wordless it’s about drawing, perfect for today’s celebration. Aaron Becker tell the story of a lonely girl who takes a journey to magical and far away places with only her imagination and her red crayon. The fact that this is his first picture book is not only amazing, it’s exciting in the sense that I can’t wait to see a lot more of his work in the future. Watch this book trailer to get a good feel for the story and the artwork. I promise you’ll fall in love!


The Snowman by Raymond Briggs (1978)

This is one of my favorites from several years ago, and whenever I see it on a shelf I just have to take it down and get lost in its pages again. It’s a story of a young boy who builds a snowman. At night, while everyone else is sleeping the snowman comes to life and takes the boy on a wonderful winterland adventure. This book was made into a cartoon video with classical music that is both lovely to watch and listen to, over and over again.

100806Rain by Peter Spier (1982)

What a captivating wordless picture book! The brother and sister set out to explore their neighborhood in the rain. The water soaked illustrations make the reader feel as if they are playing in the rain as well. They are puddle-jumpers, duck-watchers, and umbrella-dancers, until the wind picks up and a storm chases them back home. The children stay inside as the storm rages and go back out the following day to see the effects of the rain.

1430728Round Trip by Ann Jonas (1983)

Drawn in black and white, this book is a wonder to read. As you travel through the pages of the book you are completely mesmerized by the details and the background. But the story doesn’t end on the last page. Flip the book over and read it backwards and upside-down until you get back to the beginning. It is truly a ’round trip’ from home to the city and back home again.


The Lion and the Mouse  by Jerry Pinkney (2009)

The classic Aesop’s fable of the lion and the mouse is retold with classic illustrations. This book won the Caldecott Award in 2010. It is simply gorgeous! A must read for children and adults of all ages.

15791063Flora and the Flamingo by Molly Idle (2013)

This is another charming wordless picture book about a little girl and a flamingo who communicate through dance. It is especially fun to read because of the flip pages and the surprise twists in illustration. The duet between the two is perfectly choreographed and the story couldn’t be better!

15799165Bluebird by Bob Staake (2013)

Read my post about this wonderful new wordless picture book. I think it’s my new favorite!



This is just a sample of all the wonderful wordless picture books available today. Go out and find some of your own favorites.

Below is a wonderful article I found on Reading Rockets which gives parents and teachers some tips on how to read a wordless picture book with your child. There are many terrific suggestions. I hope you’ll take a minute to read it.


4 Responses to “June 7 – National Drawing Day”

  1. Darlene June 15, 2015 at 11:18 AM #

    A great list. I am in love with Journey. My daughter, who is an artist, would have loved this book as a child. he probably still would. Thanks!


    • Juliana Lee June 15, 2015 at 11:57 AM #

      Thanks for finding this a year later, Darlene! I’m hoping that more people will use this resource when planning their weekly or monthly reading lists. I’ll bet your daughter has already seen many of these books, if not you should be sure to introduce your grandchild to them! Happy drawing!


  2. jheitman22 June 7, 2014 at 8:02 AM #

    Thanks for this roundup, Juliana. You’ve mentioned a couple of my favorites–Journey and The Lion and the Mouse. I’ll have to find the others now.


    • Juliana Lee June 8, 2014 at 8:37 AM #

      Thanks Jane! Glad to have found some you didn’t know yet.


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