First Chinese original reading level for children launched

▲Photo taken on April 22, 2016 shows a children books hall at the Zongshuge Bookstore in Hangzhou, capital of east China’s Zhejiang Province. Zhongshuge Bookstore in Shanghai has put its new branch in Hangzhou into trial operation on April 23, the World Book Day. The local bookshop brand opened its first bookshop in Shanghai’s Songjiang District in 2013. It has been dubbed the “most beautiful bookstore” for its stylized interior decoration. (Xinhua/Xu)

A Chinese publishing house announced on Saturday that the first Chinese original reading level for children has been launched to promote the development of reading among children.

Sun Bei, chief editor for the project, talked about how she dealt with the task at a press conference held on Saturday. 

“Producing this set of graded reading materials was a great challenge for our research and development staff. First of all, there were no such original graded reading materials for children in China, so we had nothing to refer to when editing it. Also, we were not sure if Chinese parents would accept it,” Sun said.

Two of the sets of reading materials including 20 books have been published and other levels for higher age groups are being developed.

The books selected words and characters with a high frequency of use in Chinese children’s reading, and included many traditional stories about history and science to adapt to children’s reading habits and improve their reading skill. 

The illustrations in the books are also an important aspect of the materials. The production team invited several painters to complete the illustrations in accordance with different stories so that each picture could help children understand the content of the stories.

When testing the materials among children and parents, most of the reactions were positive. The test report said that many parents thought this was a group of books that will be a great help for the development of children’s independent reading habits.

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