This is an extract from an article published on The Bookseller Blog, 13 March 2013.
Last week was one of our favourite days – World Book Day. This annual event is a chance for parents, teachers, kids and readers of all ages to celebrate books and stories – a day to remember the reasons why we read.
Our world is now split between online and offline, the virtual and the real, the physical and the digital. We all know these two realms do not exist independently of each other, which is why being able to read whatever is in front of you (whatever form that takes) is becoming more nuanced and complex. For us, finding a way for books – particularly children’s books – to acknowledge those two worlds seems more important than ever. We need to allow ourselves to be open and flexible to the idea of reading taking more forms than it ever has before – but we also need to ensure children have ways to appreciate the value and transformative power of stories, and the act of reading itself.
Working in the field of visual literacy we know that digital media has transformed the volume of information presented to us on a day-to-day basis, particularly when it comes to images and messages. We see them everywhere and we often find ourselves wondering which bits to recognise and acknowledge, and which bits to stop and dwell upon, to reflect and comprehend and engage and build upon the ideas we are being shown. Stories are perfect for this – allowing us to spend time getting to grips with a narrative, with characters, giving our brains the opportunity to concentrate and focus. They train us to remember how to do something beyond an immediate reaction to stimuli.
To read the full article visit The Bookseller Blog…