I love reading and to be frank I read children's books more than any other books.
Reviewing them would be a good idea. But before reviewing children's books it was important for me to understand what exactly kids look for while selecting any book and what do they like in a particular book. So I did a bit of research, talked to my children's friends and came up with these pointers.
In this era of digitization, parents are looking for ways to keep their kids gadget free. And the best way to do , is by inculcating reading habit in them. Reading stimulates their brain and make them highly imaginative and not only expands their understand of the language but develop their listening skills as well. Reading has various benefits like improving concentration, making them more empathetic, expanding their vocabulary and so on.
But do we really know how children pick what they really want to read.
There are 3 Prerequisites:
Children enjoy stories that are engaging and of interest to them, Therefore interest looks like the most influential factor in a book selection. Children find a story of interest when there is a personal connection. Stories that connect to a child's home life or lifestyle establishes a personal link with the book, Since children make various connections with the books and can affect their life long reading habit, it seems important for parents and teachers to connect books to children's interest at an early age.
Use of Vocabulary
Sometimes word difficulty also plays an important role in the reading level of a test. If child is unable to read many of the words, then they will probably reject the book because of the difficulty in reading. Children use the same strategy when the words are too easy. They definitely want some challenge , but do not want to experience frustration while reading. Therefore attention plays an important role in comprehension as does interest.
Freedom to choose
Allow children to select their own books as that motivate them to read and improves their attitude towards reading which in turn will help them in their overall development. However it is important to help them choose books because if they select a book that is frustrating, boring, slow moving, monotonous, too difficult reading motivation many declines.
7 factors children consider while selecting a book
Children uses variety of techniques while determining if a book is of any interest to them.
Physical Characteristics of the book
While selecting a book children look at the book's physical attributes like book's thickness, number of pages, attractive covers and appealing pictures or illustrations. Young adults and junior high students enjoy books that shows maps, blueprints and photos. Children with special needs also select eye-catching books. Attractive books spark curiosity and imagination in children.
Characterization in the book
Children enjoy books in which characters' experience are similar to their own. Now what does this means? Children expect experience related to their own experience while reading a book. Certain external circumstances like economic status, family situations, school life may influence them in their selection process as they would be able to relate with these traits. Children also like characters in series books because they come to know them.
Author of the book
Recognition of author is very important for the children when they are determining what book to read. Familiarity with an author influences especially those children who are reading it for pleasure. Children enjoy series books by authors with whom they are already familiar, as it gives them comfort of knowing the way they write so that they can pay more attention to the story rather than understanding the style of writing.
Content of the book matters
Subject matter also plays a vital role in book selection. For example, a child who wanted a book on planets looked for that specific content in the text.Therefore content appears to hold value and involve young readers. We all know that curiosity sparks questions to which children want an answer, so they read to satisfy that need of theirs.
Plot in the book
Children like series that proceed event by event, that is, it should be episodic because they are easy to understand and follow. Children evaluate the plot of a story on the book's review section, so it appears to play a role in children's choice.
Genre of the book
Children like books which are easy to comprehend. They like reader friendly books so that they can relax, enjoy reading and do not lose interest. They avoid books where in they have to find meaning of every word. Young adults and accelerated learners likes mystery, adventure and suspense as all have an element of surprise involved. The action is these genres engages and excites readers across age. Humour is also one of the genre which most of the children enjoy. Comics are a category of humour that they love.
Recommendations for the book
While selecting a book recommendations from variety of sources like friends, family and teachers plays an important role. Most children read books as their friends. Recommendations could be direct or indirect. A direct recommendation happens when a person discuss a book with another person and an indirect recommendation when child overhears other children discussing a book. Both these recommendations encourages children to read.
I am sure these pointer will not only help you in picking books for your kids but will also help reviewers in reviewing children's books.