EL Support Lesson

All About the Picture

This is a great lesson plan to introduce your EL students to the use of illustrations in a story. This can be a stand-alone lesson or used as support to the lesson What's in a Picture?
This lesson can be used as a pre-lesson for the What’s in a Picture? lesson plan.
Grade Subject View aligned standards
This lesson can be used as a pre-lesson for the What’s in a Picture? lesson plan.

Students will be able to describe the connection between the illustrations and words in a story.


Students will be able to explain the connection between illustrations and words in a story with grade level words using sentence stems.

(2 minutes)
  • Display the cover of the book If You Give a Mouse a Cookie to the class.
  • Say, "Today we are going to learn how the pictures in a story work with the words in the story to help us understand what we are reading."
(8 minutes)
  • Display the tier 2 Vocabulary Card and go over the definition by saying the word aloud and asking students to turn and talk to a partner to share what they think the word "picture" means.
  • Have students share out their ideas with the group.
  • Turn the card over and display the accompanying image. Read aloud the definition.
  • Ask students to turn back to their partner and share in their own words what a picture is.
  • Repeat this process with the tier 3 vocabulary words.
(10 minutes)
  • Read aloud the book If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Numeroff
  • As you read, pause and point to the different elements of the illustration and use a think aloud to demonstrate identifying the connections between the words and illustrations on each page. (e.g., "If you give a mouse a cookie, he'll want a glass of milk, look—here he is asking for a glass of milk," etc.)
(2 minutes)
  • After reading the last page of the book, have the students turn and talk to a partner to share the connections they see between the illustrations and the words. Provide them with the sentence frame, "I think the picture shows ____ part of the story," to use in their conversation.


  • Provide additional sentence frames for students to use and/or pair students up someone who speaks their home language.


  • Provide sentence stems for students to use in a pair-share conversation. For example, "I think the illustrations and words are related because ____ and ____."
(10 minutes)
  • Provide students with a copy of the Match and Draw the Story worksheet.
  • Explain that students should listen as you read each of the sentences for the story aloud and should cut out and paste the illustration that goes with the story.
(3 minutes)
  • Review the tier 2 and tier 3 vocabulary words with the class.
  • Ask the students to share their own definitions of illustration with a partner using the thinking routine, "I used to think illustration meant ____ now I think illustration means ____."

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