Saturday, March 01, 2008

Getting Kids to Read

One of my passions is encouraging kids to read my favorite books: great science fiction.
In fact I even joined a group that facilitates just that. You can visit their website at Reading for the Future, which links to other sites with the same mission.

In the back of my mind for years has been this idea. I present it you today.

Yes, I know that authors do not having their works butchered or censored. However, kids are kids; and there are a few things about adult literature and kids that either are incompatible or intimidating.

I have not checked to see if this is already being done. Is it?

What if we did this to some of the exciting adult science fiction:

  1. Make a reading list of the best pages in a long, complex "future history" with many interlacing threads.  What if that list dealt with only one thread and were placed in a mini-story for kids?
  2.  What if the stories were illustrated in the same manner as the old Treasure Island and Star Wars books (art rather than photos)?
  3.  What if a list of the pages of only one subset of readings were in a reading list or lesson?
  4. What if new anthologies were published with certain words removed and story subsets were included--like the old literature books we grew up with but with book passages as well as short stories?

These could be short, 100 pages or so. They could be ebooks. They could be illustrated. They could be packaged as youth books. They could be paperback and library-bound hardbacks. They could have links to author bios, information about the "rest of the story" and lessons online--all those things that would make the book more like a textbook removed from the book itself but made easily accessible.

Teachers and Librarians, would this work?

I have a long list of books--the ones in my bookstore online--that I would love included in such a project. I have another set that I have recently read that I would want included, too.

Yes, I would love to be tagged as an editor for such a project.

The picture at the top is of a slide that is a PowerPoint Template Design. To me this design is a bit other-worldly. I thought it would add ambiance to this post.

Postscript: I reread this page today, 10/8/10, and -- oops! -- found typos.  I corrected several. Hope I got them all! Sorry. --Valerie

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