First, how much are kids reading? Turns out they're reading less than ever. The reasons? Homework and standardized testing are taking up a lot of their free time. And this has some seriously negative effects. Studies have shown that:
- Kids who are readers do better at school and in life
- Children and teens who read for pleasure on a daily or weekly basis score better on reading tests than infrequent readers
- Frequent readers also score better on writing tests
- Advanced readers accrue personal, professional, and social advantages
- Literary readers are more likely than non-readers to engage in positive civic activities, such as volunteering
- Mythology based fantasy
- Rise of the diary and journal format (Wimpy Kid)
- Urban fiction – street lit
Nalah and the Pink Tiger was written by Anne Sawyer-Aitch, and she also turned the story into a puppet show (interactivity, anyone?). We loved the bold colors and unique look to the illustrations, and the puppets were just icing on the cake for us! We also have a number of other pictures books in the final stages of acquisition.
Now that we know what kids like to read, the question becomes: Who is purchasing these books? The answer shouldn't surprise you, it's parents. Mostly moms. But there were some numbers that did surprise us. Did you know that 32% of books purchased in 2009 were from households earning less than $32,000 annually? And 1/5 of those sales were children’s books.
Additionally, 82% of parents wish their kids read more often. What kinds of books do they wish their kids would read more of? More challenging books for younger ages. They have increased expectations for children’s reading capabilities at younger ages.
Lexicon Adventure Series by Pendred Noyce. The first book, Lost in Lexicon, is a story that children loved. They related to the characters, and were lured into thinking about slope, metaphor, and many other cool concepts, all in the midst of treasure hunts and adventure. We're hoping for a similar success with The Ice Castle, which teaches children the math behind music.The final thing we wanted to know was, are parents buying these books in print or as ebooks? And it turns out that even though ebooks are a really big deal, traditional printed books are still selling in the children’s market because younger readers like to trade/share books. Young readers also like to go to the midnight releases to get hardcover books of their favorite authors. Kids like having bookshelves – collections, showing off what they read.