GRAPHIC NOVELS 3building
p. 12). The use of graphic novels can also be of benefit to English Language Learners
(ELL) as the novels pair a “graphic representation”
(p. 12) with text, therefore reinforcing thenew language and concepts. Barbara Ward and Terrell Young (2011), in their article
“ReadingGraphically: Comics and Graphic Novels for Readers from Kindergarten through High School,”agree by stating, “r
educed amount of text and attention-grabbing graphics help ELL andstruggling readers infer, predict
, and reflect on what they read”
(p. 284). While graphic novelscan help struggling readers at any age, these were specifically mentioned as strengths forelementary classroom usage.Graphic novels can also help all students develop visual literacy skills and prepare themto be a 21
century learner. According to the American Association of School Librarians (2007),
“visual literacy” is a skill students must develop in order to “draw conclusions, make informed
ly knowledge to new situations, and create new knowledge” (p. 5).
Knowing howto read and assess various forms of media is a necessary skill (SLMS Role in Reading Task Force, 2009, p. 6).
In today‟s society
, students are inundated by images and text, and teachersneed to evaluate students on their ability to decipher information from various mediums.While many elementary school teachers may still view graphic novels as extracurricularreading materials, they have unlimited possibilities for instructional application. Using graphicnovels, teachers can create lessons where students make inferences about different storyelements based on the text and illustrations.
Students employ critical analysis to, “
evaluate theeffectiveness of specific images in communicating specific messages
(SLMS Role in ReadingTask Force, 2009, p.7). Annette Lamb and Larry Johnson (2009) wrote an article withsuggestions for instructors on how to incorporate graphic novels and technology in the classroom