Picture Dictionaries

Barbara J. Feldman

Today’s topic is picture dictionaries, where a picture is worth a thousand words. Although traditionally used for early childhood education, a few of these picks use picture-dictionary metaphor to explore more advanced topics such as astronomy, architecture and anatomy.

  • Busy Bee Kids Printables: Mini Alphabet Coloring Books5 stars

    "These Alphabet Coloring Books are easy to make, just fold in quarters and place one inside the other, staple on the fold to secure and you're done! Print them all and you've got one really fun picture dictionary!" Yup! There are forty-eight pages of coloring fun in this do-it-yourself picture dictionary, starting with "A" is for apple, alligator, airplane and aquarium, and ending with "Z" is for zipper, zoo, zebra and zero.

  • Enchanted Learning: Little Explorer's Picture Dictionary5 stars

    Browse through the Little Explorer's Picture Dictionary by clicking on any of the letters or the themes that are listed directly below the alphabet. In addition to a drawing and a sentence, many of the 2500+ entries are linked to related Enchanted Learning pages. And (wow!) versions of the dictionary are also available in Dutch, French, German, Italian, Japanese, and Swedish.

  • ESOL Help: Online Picture Dictionary5 stars

    This English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) site is created by Doina Popovici, a teacher from Atlanta, GA. Her online picture dictionary is divided into nested categories, such as clothing, colors, emotions, health, math and so on. The animals category, for example, is further divided into birds, fish, insects, mammals, pets, reptiles, and rodents. For related games, click on ESL Flashcards to play with flashcards made from the picture dictionary words.

  • Merriam-Webster: Visual Dictionary Online5 stars

    "Filled with stunning illustrations labeled with accurate terminology in up to six languages, it is the ideal language-learning and vocabulary dictionary for use at school, at home or at work.." The Visual Dictionary from Merriam-Webster is not for preschoolers, but rather a picture dictionary for the rest of us. The dictionary covers themes such as Astronomy, Earth, Human Being, Arts & Architecture, Communications , and Sports. "Explore the 15 major themes to access more than 6,000 images and see words like never before.

  • Photographic Dictionary5 stars

    With over 5000 entries, you "can use this site as a learning tool or a children's picture dictionary, or just to browse to look at the pictures!" In addition to the categories listed in the left-hand navigation menu, you can also browse by letter (they are listed across the top of the site) or by rhyme. You'll find the link to the rhyme pages in the upper-right and corner of the site. For a beautiful lesson in healthy eating, check out the Fruit and Vegetable categories.

  • Honorable Mentions

    The following links are either new discoveries or sites that didn't make it into my newspaper column because of space constraints. Enjoy!


    Cite This Page

  • Feldman, Barbara. "Picture Dictionaries." Surfnetkids. Feldman Publishing. 5 Mar. 2013. Web. 22 Nov. 2014. <http://www.surfnetkids.com/resources/picture-dictionaries/ >.


  • About This Page

  • By . Originally published March 5, 2013. Last modified March 9, 2014.

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