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Exploring books for children: words and pictures
Exploring books for children: words and pictures

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This free course was written by Sharon Goodman, Philip Seargeant and Jackie Tuck from the Open University’s School of Language and Applied Linguistics.

Except for third party materials and otherwise stated (see terms and conditions [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] ), this content is made available under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 Licence .

The material acknowledged below is Proprietary and used under licence (not subject to Creative Commons Licence). Grateful acknowledgement is made to the following sources for permission to reproduce material in this free course:

Course image

Picture book with a ty rabbit. Courtesy of Jackie Tuck


Figure 1: © Jose Luis Pelaez Inc/Getty Images.

Figures 2, 3A and 3B: Molly Bang, (2000) Picture This: How Pictures Work. By SeaStar Books. © Molly Bang

Figure 5 Series of images from children’s books - slideshow: The front cover of The Best Bat in School, Dorita Fairlie Bruce (1933), Oxford University Press; The front cover of The Wolves in the Walls, Neil Gaiman (2003), Bloomsbury Publishing. Illustration © Dave McKean; We Honestly Can Look After Your Dog, from Charlie and Lola, Lauren Child (2005), Puffin Books 2005, published by Penguin Books; Asterix the Gaul, Written by Rene Goscinny and Illustrated by Albert Uderzo (1961), Orion Publishing Group. © 1961 Goscinny/Uderzo; The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Eric Carle (1969), Puffin, Penguin Books. © Eric Carle; Old MacDonald Had a Farm, (2007), Little Scholastic. © Scholastic Inc 2007; In The Night Garden, TM & © Ragdoll Worldwide Limited (2007), BBC Worldwide Limited

Figure 6: Where’s Spot?. First published by William Heinemann 1980. Frederick Warne (2000), Penguin Group.

Figure 7: Beware of the Storybook Wolves, Lauren Child (2000), Hodder Childrens Books. © Lauren Child 2000.

Figure 8: Red Shift, Alan Garner (1973), Published by William Collins, an imprint of Harper Collins. © Alan Garner 1973.

Figures 9A, 9B: The Princess Diaries, Meg Cabot (2007), Illustration by Nila Aye, Macmillan Childrens Books 2007.

Figures 10A, 10B: Skeleton Key, (2005), Walker Books Ltd. Boy with torch logo TM & © 2005 Stormbreaker Productions Ltd. Walker Books Ltd, London SE11 5HJ.

Figures 11A, 11B: Jason Cockcroft, from Rowling, J.K., (2007) Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Bloomsbury Publishing.

Figure 13 middle left: Alice by Mabel Lucie Atwell. Mabel Lucie Atwell illustration of Alice from The Illustrators of Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass (ed.) Graham Ovenden, Academy Editions (1972).

Figure 13 far right: Alice by Peter Blake. Illlustrations to Through the Looking Glass ‘Well, this is grand’ said Alice. © Tate London 2009.

Figures 16 and 17: From Gorilla by Anthony Browne, Walker Books Ltd. © 1983 Anthony Browne.

Figure 19: From Hansel and Gretel illustrated by Anthony Browne, Walker Books Ltd. © 1981 2003 Anthony Browne.

Keep on Learning Image: © Konstantin Chagin /


Activity 1 video: © The Open University (2017). Thank you to the Bodleian Library for their contribution.

Activity 7 video: © The Open University (2017) and its licensors.

Activity 12 video: © The Open University and illustrations: courtesy of Anthony Browne.

Every effort has been made to contact copyright owners. If any have been inadvertently overlooked, the publishers will be pleased to make the necessary arrangements at the first opportunity.

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