For the longest time books were written and then printed. Publishers, printers and booksellers had every reason to feel confident in their career choices with solid, profitable futures as far as their eyes could see. But then came digital book readers.
Ebooks have been slowly but steadily gaining in popularity. For some ebook fans its all about the price. Ebooks are often free or very inexpensive compared to the printed book. For others, its about the efficient storage of many books in a small tablet instead of having to dust shelves of books. With all the ebook success swirling around, of course they found a way to make a color ereader that could accommodate children’s picture books.
All the technology surrounding today’s children creates questions for educators and parents. Some parents are pro-technology and others swear against it. Television and video games already had our children’s attention. Now everywhere you look young children have smart phones or tablets in hand. There are benefits to exposing children to technology. Like anything, it can be educational, inspiration and can broaden the mind of a child when used in healthy moderation. But, is technology having a negative effect on literacy?
I’m a parent. So strictly from my parental point of view, I think television, video games and other technology all have their place in young people’s lives. But, when children are constantly exposed to screens of images (like cartoons) with audio too much of the time it might chip away at their ability to love reading. Love of reading is what creates love of writing and both these things are essential to keeping literacy alive.
But, kids love the action of cartoons and games so much that its become very hard for traditional books to compete for a child’s affection in today’s technology filled marketplace. As illustrators of children’s books and products, we feel pretty strongly about the need to keep literacy alive in our children. So, we came up with a hybrid children’s book.
We call the patent pending concept “Moving Picture Books”. They’re not a video or cartoon. They’re not a video game. They’re not a printed book and their not an ebook. They’re an interactive reading experience for young children that fuses animation together with traditional reading, sight word support and music.
There’s quite a bit of research to support the idea that animated storytelling is good for young children. But animated cartoons and movies are not nearly as healthy for your child as an actual animated storybook. Researchers confirm the existence or a mesmerizing affect that tv or computer screens displaying cartoons can have on children.
That’s why our animated stories are interactive. Moving Picture Books require your child to participate in the book. Readers will have to follow along, and click on sight words or identify objects in order for the story to move forward. Additionally, our animated scenes are set into pages that your child must turn, retaining the look and feel of a traditional book’s page layouts.
When will our Moving Picture Books be available to purchase? We expect the first title to be ready for release this fall (2019). We’re looking forward to using technology to help parents raise reading lovers!