1. In your country, who would ask the children to read, schools or parents?
Well, I’d say both actually. It is required that students should read particular books at school, and the teacher will check if the reading is properly done by the students. Usually, we will have seminars at school to discuss what we have read during the summer and winter holiday. And our parents or I should say most parents are willing to encourage their children to read as many books as possible. Coz Chinese people attach great importance to reading books. After all, home is a massive influence. Supportive and understanding parents are key to developing their child’s reading, you know.
2. Do you prefer paper books or E-books?
Well, I think this depends upon a couple of things, and I would go with paper books. Physical books exclusively. I love the look and feel, the smell of crisp pages, good print and font in a physical book, whether it is a very expensive signed hardcover, paperback or mass-market paperback. I love holding it whilst reading. The overall experience is necessary. They are more accessible. This is what I feel personal. More accessible in terms of the first reading. They have felt easy to the eye over the years and better connections were made when I read them first. Touching the pages and holding the book makes reading a good experience. And...., I love some Classics wherein the books are specially leather-spiral bound; stays immaculate for decades.
3. What kind of books do children read?
Well...... I think children read Picture Storybooks. Text and illustrations tell the story in picture storybooks. This type of book is especially appropriate for young children because the colorful and clear illustrations and artwork support a simple storyline. The illustrations often provide additional information not covered in the text. Rhyming stories and books with repeated patterned sounds are particularly interesting to children. Picture storybooks remain children's favorite books long after their preschool years. And what else….. Yeah, I think children like participation books coz young children delight in being able to repeat the book's suggestions, such as clapping their hands, touching their toes, or covering their eyes. Lift-the-flap books also promote interaction. You know, children enjoy peeking under the flap to find the answer or make a new discovery.
4. Do you think parents should continue reading?
Yeah definitely. And I do think that parents should read with their children. It's a real shame that parents don't realise that just 10 minutes of reading with their children each day. I have read a report somewhere saying that Reading together six days a week means an extra hour of support for a child. It's definitely cheaper than an hour with a tutor and it could make a much bigger difference. Parents are really important reading role models and research shows that children's attitudes towards reading improve the more they see their parents read.
5. Do you think printed books will continue to exist?
No, I think paper books will continue to be printed, alongside other technologies. Yeah, it’s true that electronic books have any number of advantages—they take up less room, it’s lighter and easier to carry one device than a dozen physical books, they can be easily updated. But they aren’t good for everything. I think most people have had the experience of picking up a book and saying, “Now, let me think, the paragraph I was talking about was about halfway through, on the left-hand side, near the bottom of the page” and quickly find the passage in question. But whatever the answer is, I think that different types of text will migrate to different delivery systems. So, while electronic devices might be better for disposable reading, it doesn’t lend itself as well to keep reading or study.