Picture books are good for you!

Picture books are, of course, the books with so many pictures and even without any words. They cover a variety of topics to spark children’s curiosity and imagination, as well as let them learn in a relax way and think more. There are no rules in reading the books.

During my childhood I didn’t read picture books. It seems that teachers and parents in Hong Kong don’t encourage children to read picture books, but require them to read books with many words. Besides, children need to spend much time on examinations. They need to have good academic achievement in order to create their career path.

Is picture book useless? Yes, it doesn’t have any economic values. Yes, it is useless for examination and it can’t help you get better jobs. So, we shouldn’t read it? Beautiful sketches in the picture books are usually worth reading as they can carry a lot of meanings, or other suggestions raised by children when they are reading them and imagining them.

Why should we use our imagination? Why should we think of something even when it is illogical in reality? It’s a gift which can change the world, from impossibility to possibility. With imagination, innovations and inventions greatly improve our lives. Life can be more interesting.

But in the education system of Hong Kong kills children’s imagination and creativity with a series of examinations which only allows the so-called standard answers. They tend to learn from past successful cases since they want to be safe. But this kind of copying usually fails because they don’t address their own problems, don’t ask themselves what they want to be and are not willing to seek their own ways. They think they can prevent all forms of risks but it’s not the case. The Hong Kong’s economy is getting worse, mostly because of no imagination, innovation and creativity.

I can’t tell exactly how reading picture books can bring to everyone, especially in terms of one’s career. But why don’t we give us (or our children) a little bit time, say 30 to 60 minutes a day, to do that to see how we can benefit from the books? Sadly people are now forcing children to spend 100% effort and time on only one thing which is the examination, it’s the greatest gamble as no other possibilities can enter into one’s life. Imagine when the society no longer requires people with outstanding academic achievements one day...






LifeAlvin Cheng