May 23, 2009

Let the kids judge for themselves

Read my article in The Irish Times today!

CHILDREN ARE visually literate, and make excellent book choices given half a chance. The failing is often with adults choosing the cliched fairy and truck books. When children are left to choose their own titles, they can often make surprising discoveries for themselves. It is a great way of letting them take control.

Children don’t read the blurb, they don’t read the publishers’ bumf or care what prizes a title has won. Most of the small ones can’t read. So what do they do? They read pictures; they judge a book by its cover, and they go with their gut instinct.

So with this in mind I conducted an experiment. When all the review copies came in from The Irish Times, I placed them randomly around the room. I wanted to see what my kids, picture-book readers, Oscar aged five and Aoibhe aged three, were immediately drawn to. Neither of them can read yet.

Read the rest of the article here.

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