Discovering silent books

Stories without words

This project to promote reading proposes texts using only images to recount stories: such illustrated publications are called Silent Books.
In choosing how to read these texts without words, we have tried to remain faithful to their authors’ aims in proposing stories which, since they have no language, can be read by people of different nationalities together.

The reader uses her mime and vocal skills to create the characters, each with their own rhythm and physicality, using a language made of sounds, silences and gestures, and using the musicality of the voice to evoke soundscapes and places.


·        Silent books are able to overcome language barriers and promote sharing and exchange between different cultures.

·        They are tools of great value in teaching the meaning of images and helping children to recognise figures and their significance.

·        The books can be used by readers of every language, even people who have not yet learnt to read.

·        They develop the slow time of observation. Bibliography.

Some of the books used in the project.

1.     6 years and older:
Telefono senza fili (The wireless phone), by Renato Moriconi
Il Barbaro (The barbarian), by Renato Moriconi
Mentre tu dormi (While you sleep), by Mariana Ruiz Johnson L’onda (The wave), by Suzy Lee
Viaggio (Journey), by Aaron Becker

3-5 years:
C’era una volta un topo chiuso in un libro (The mouse in the book), by Monique Felix, La mela e la farfalla (The apple and the butterfly), by Iela Mari
Testa in su testa in giù (Head up head down) by Marie-Louise Fitzpatrick
Mangia che ti mangio (Eat or I’ll eat you), by Iela Mari
Pois (Peas), by Cristina Bazzoni


The project is aimed at two age groups, with different books for each group:

Course A: 6 years and older


1 hour for older participants; 45 minutes for younger ones.