Children’s Book Day: An Appraisal Of The Nigerian Reading Culture
With the global technological advancement and evolving cartoon characters, the reading culture seems to be dying.Short attention span is on the rise and children are becoming more speakers than readers.
In 2007, The Kids and Family Reading Report carried out a research in the United States to test the reading habits of children and its findings were quite revealing. The dying reading culture improved with the introduction of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. 89% of parents whose children like Harry Potter fans said that their children had begun to enjoy reading while 76% claimed that reading the series helped their children perform better in school.
Nigeria had in the 80s and 90s, books by renowned authors that projected the cultural values of the nation. In the 21st century, Nigeria joined the US. It was not uncommon to see children play games on their gadgets rather than read. Soon, bookshops declined and book clubs were replaced with other extracurricular activities.
As the publisher and founder of Clever Clogs publishing company, Mrs Olubunmi Aboderin-Talabi, explained at a book launch in March,
As in most of the bookstores, I had to search hard for the children’s books, which they kept around the back somewhere in a corner of the store. It was difficult coming across books with Nigerian content written by Nigerian authors.
Thankfully, there are some Nigerians who have dedicated their craft towards writing stories for children. The beautifully captured stories have not only become recognized in the country but have won several accolades and awards across continents.
Below are some of the finest Nigerian children’s works: