Bring history to kids through books

Updated: 2014-12-16 09:00

(China Daily)

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Chinese history has many good stories that can be written into children's books and turned into cartoons, both in print and on the audio-visual media. More importantly, such books and programs, if well produced, can be a great source of knowledge for children, says an article in People's Daily. Excerpts:

Some textbooks for primary schools published before 1949 have become popular again because they are full of stories underlining Chinese culture that interest children. But the popularity of the old textbooks also highlights the fact that people are disappointed with today's textbooks for primary school students. The cartoons made in China today also suffer from the same problem of hollowness.

Few producers are willing to take the trouble of going deep into history and culture to write and make quality books and cartoons. Poor-quality books and cartoon programs may initially draw children's attention because of their bright colors and lively images. But the information in and contents of the books and programs, some of which are ridden with violence, are too simple compared with those produced even decades before computers and information technology became the norm.

Some children's books and cartoon programs even distort historical facts, misleading children. The publishing and media administration authorities must take measures to change this dangerous trend.

Authors writing books and directors making cartoon programs for children must respect history and should not take liberties with the facts. Writing books and making cartoon programs for children are sometimes more difficult than writing books and making films for adults. The stories and plots of children books and programs must be based on historical facts and produced in a way that draws their attention.

If Chinese authors and directors cannot write good books and make good films for children, they will allow foreign products and old books to grab children's attention.