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Digital Literature for Children

Texts, Readers and Educational Practices

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Edited By Mireia Manresa and Neus Real

This book is the result of a research project carried out by the research group GRETEL from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB) on children’s and adolescents’ digital literary education. It offers some of the outcomes of this project and combines them with other contributions from internationally renowned authors to address the three pillars of digital literary reader training: the texts themselves, the responses they generate in children and adolescents and digital reading practices at home and at school.
This work is intended as a contribution to international research on digital literature for children and young adults and its impact on the teaching practices of literary education. Its main goals are to guide the inclusion of this training in classrooms and to investigate strategies for accessing multimedia, interactive and hypertextual messages and products that form a part of fictional products today.
The volume begins by contextualising electronic literary reading and specifying the new research framework of digital literature for children and adolescents. It then provides an overview of the relationships between the electronic medium and children and young adult production on the one hand, and of the digital works and their features on the other, to reflect on their potential for literary education. Subsequently, it tackles the effective contact of children and adolescents with this literature in order to determine what happens when different electronic works are made available to children readers without eliminating printed literature from their environment. Finally, the floor is given to two leading creators.
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The Past, Present and Future of Digital Picturebooks for Children

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Junko YOKOTA

National College of Education, National Louis University (Chicago)

The digital world has changed what we read, how we read and how the book world operates in virtually every aspect, from publishing to libraries to bookstores to archiving. The pace is dizzying and many “rules of operation” continue to be created and recreated even while the game is in development. Over the past decade, the players have changed, the process has changed and the products have changed. But in the midst of this fast-paced fervour, what is important to keep in mind while considering the present and the future of what have long been known as print picturebooks? From the earliest days of digital features and formats of literature for children, this question has guided inquiry in the field (Glass, and Yokota 2008). Digital books have been called both the most exciting thing and the scariest thing for children and adult picturebook aficionados (Yokota, and Teale 2014). This chapter considers the past: print picture book publications from generations ago that clearly played with features of oral storytelling that we now see as standard in digital publishing; the present: what is being published as digital materials for children to read/play/interact with; and the future: what promises to be successful for future development of digital materials for children.

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