Picture Book to learn English3 years ago I was asked to write a series of 12 picture books for a publisher in Tokyo. Picture books are huge in Japan, but I hadn’t the foggiest idea how to write one. Luckily for me though they put me through a year’s crash course with some of the best editors and producers in Japan, which after a lot of “now then Richard, that’s not very good is it?”s, I got to see all the tricks and methods that make a great picture book great.

Since then people have been asking me to write more books, and when you combine them with CDs I’ve been really impressed at how useful they can be for learning English. The kids want to listen to them again and again! But it’s not really economically viable for me to produce printed books ( teachers are too small a market to cover the costs!), and I’ve always been really impressed, and hence highly recommend, the Apricot series of picture books. The author, Nakamoto Sensei, is as far as I’m concerned, a genius in that she writes some really cool stories with only the most minimal English. “Pal the Parrot” is a classic!

But there are still some language areas that don’t have suitable books, and while I’ve been writing lots of ideas, I just haven’t had a way to get them out there. However, in yesterday’s demo class what they did was that instead of a normal book, they’d cut out the pages and stuck them on large pieces of card. This way the kids can see, even from the back. And that’s where I realised for the first time that picture books don’t actually have to be books! They can be printed sheets that you can laminate and hold up in front of the class!! That means anyone can print them out themselves, and as far as GE is concerned, I can simply upload the first few into the CD Owners Club to see how people like them! That means I can have a budget for them ( as hopefully a few people who were wondering whether to buy the CDs or not might see the picture books and decide to go for it), and I can put the non-printable version on the site so the kids can study at home!

So I spent the day producing the first one! It’s not yet finished, and I haven’t done the printable version nor put sound on yet, but have a look and see what you think!

Online Picture Book: “What’s your favourite food?”

Richard Graham

Hello, I'm Richard Graham. When I was a kid I found school to be sooooo boring... So I transformed my way of teaching. I listened to what the kids were really wanting to say and taught it in ways they really wanted to learn. The results were magical. Now I help teachers just like you teach amazing lessons and double your incomes!