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Why it’s so important to make children’s books fun!

by Maleeha Mir

Maleeha enjoys some lovely books!

Growing up, I never used ‘books’ and ‘fun’ in the same sentence – they were polar opposites in my mind. But now that I’m older and wiser, I know that wasn’t the case at all – I just hadn’t found the right book! I mean the one that would open my eyes to a thousand enchanting worlds, introduce me to a million marvellous characters, and show me the countless ways to have fun with books!

After years of being a reluctant reader, I know the importance of fun in children’s books. It’s a vital element in making reading an enjoyable activity for children. Our book When I Coloured in the World is great for this because it takes on the imaginative perspective of a child. The magic of such stories shines through the words and pictures. The more fun a book is, the more likely a child is to read without any inducement or bribery with chocolates – as in my case!

Making their books fun allows children to engage with the story in a relaxed, calm way. Reading becomes a reward in itself! However, encouraging a reluctant reader can be a struggle because of the unavoidable association with school. Homework, boring classrooms, and strict teachers all come to mind when the word ‘book’ is uttered to a child. But the truth is that reading can be much more than fun than playing on an iPad! This is especially true when children are shown books that link to their interests and hobbies. As a child I loved playing football, so my teacher gave me a book that changed my life forever: Frances Fairweather – Demon StrikerIt was the best book I had ever read! It had everything I wanted: a football, a rebellious female protagonist, and a plot full of adventure and mischief. I had discovered that reading was fun!

A beautiful illustration from A Bottle of Happiness!

It’s crucial that we change this image of reading from ‘boring’ to ‘fun’, because children’s books offer so much more than just stories. They stimulate the imagination, spark curiosity and teach children about the most important things in life: love, kindness, friendship, happiness, and empathy. A Bottle of Happiness is a fantastic book to that illustrate some of these important ideas for children in an exciting, visual way.

Great books shape how children think about the world, how they interact with others and most importantly, the kind of adults they become. Fun children’s books teach essential life-lessons that have a lasting effect on young readers. They open the door to limitless imagination, creating an experience that’s truly magical.

So let’s make an effort to make children’s books more fun, and show every child the boundless joy of stories!

Maleeha is an intern at Tiny Owl

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