How and Why to Read and Create Children's Digital Books

How and Why to Read and Create Children's Digital Books

A Guide for Primary Practitioners

Natalia Kucirkova


  • Description
  • Author
  • Info
  • Reviews


How and Why to Read and Create Children's Digital Books outlines effective ways of using digital books in early years and primary classrooms, and specifies the educational potential of using digital books and apps in physical spaces and virtual communities. With a particular focus on apps and personalized reading, Natalia Kucirkova combines theory and practice to argue that personalized reading is only truly personalized when it is created or co-created by reading communities.

Divided into two parts, Part I suggests criteria to evaluate the educational quality of digital books and practical strategies for their use in the classroom. Specific attention is paid to the ways in which digital books can support individual children’s strengths and difficulties, digital literacies, language and communication skills. Part II explores digital books created by children, their caregivers, teachers and librarians, and Kucirkova also offers insights into how smart toys, tangibles and augmented/virtual reality tools can enrich children’s reading for pleasure.

How and Why to Read and Create Children's Digital Books is of interest to an international readership ranging from trainee or established teachers to MA level students and researchers, as well as designers, librarians and publishers. All are inspired to approach children’s reading on and with screens with an agentic perspective of creating and sharing.

Praise for How and Why to Read and Create Children's Digital Books

'A very salient book for the times we are living in ... a book which is both eloquent and easy to engage with, that provides research-informed insights and inspiration regarding the world of e-books and apps.'
UKLA 2021 Academic Book Award shortlist announcement

'This is an exciting and innovative book – not least because it is freely available to read online but because its origins are in primary practice. The author is an accomplished storyteller, and whether you know, as yet, little about the value of digital literacy in the storymaking process, or you are an accomplished digital player, this book is full of evidence-informed ideas, explanations and inspiration.'
Dr Liz Chamberlain, Open University

'At a time when children's reading is increasingly on-screen, many teachers, parents and carers are seeking practical, straightforward guidance on how to support children's engagement with digital books. This volume, written by the leading expert on personalised e-books, is packed with app reviews, suggestions and insights from recent international research, all underpinned by careful analysis of digital book features and recognition of reading as a social and cultural practice. Providing accessible guidance on finding, choosing, sharing and creating digital books, it will be welcomed by those excited by the possibilities of enthusing children about reading in the digital age.'
Cathy Burnett, Professor of Literacy and Education, Sheffield Hallam University


Natalia Kucirkova:

Natalia Kucirkova is a Senior Research Fellow at Institute of Education, UCL. Her research concerns innovative ways of supporting children’s book reading, digital literacy and exploring the role of personalization. She co-edits the book series, Children’s Reading and Writing on Screen, and the journal, Literacy. Natalia’s research takes place collaboratively across academia, commercial and third sectors.