Good Books vs Bad Books — How to pick up the right book for your child?

Posted in articles, guest on October 6th, 2010 by admin – 4 Comments

“A good book has no ending”. ~R.D. Cumming

“Books” – the magical word consisting of five letters that encapsulates 26 letters of the alphabet within – are a great source of inspiration and learning for all, especially children.

Life is full of surprises. Imagine a world without books – no encyclopedia, no dictionary, no fiction and no non-fiction – life would be barren without them. Opening a book to read is more than mere physical activity – it is an opening of the mind to unclutter it and make it free from claustrophobic thoughts that surround us. Books broaden our vision and open the door to a magical journey. We can traverse the world through books; we can enrich our knowledge on culture and history and at the same time improve our vocabulary and diction.

Books and children

Today’s child (unlike yesterday’s child) is spoilt for choice. Television, internet and video games have conspired to take away a child’s time away from reading. I am not against any of the media described above – after all one need’s to have fun in life as well — as it is an inevitable part of growing up. Whilst such media do add value to a child’s growing up – this is far lesser than the value added through reading a good book.

A good book is the beginning of a fascinating journey – image growing up without reading Amar Chithra Katha, Panchatantra, Enid Blyton, Swami and friends, Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew or the Sherlock Holmes series. Think of the indelible mark these “childhood friends” created in your minds.

Do they not continue to stay with you forever? Let your child float into this ocean of books. Let them read and discover – let them read a “difficult” word and then look it up in the dictionary (on their own) to ascertain its meaning. Let this joy of discovery take them away from vices and expand their mind. Let a new world open to them.

Effect of “Bad” Books
Like anything else, books can also have an undesirable effect on young minds. Just like any other media whose usage has to be monitored, it is important to “let your child loose” into the right set of books. The damage that a “bad” book can wrought in your child’s fertile mind is unfathomable. A “bad” book, i.e. a book that is “undesirable” for a child (with the definition of “undesirable” being left to each parent to their own discretion), can severely cripple a child’s thought process. A bad book for e.g. would often come without the right sense of morals in differentiating right from wrong. A good book on the other hand teaches a child the right sense of morals and exposes them to it from a very early and impressionable age.

The mind is but a wandering bird. It needs to have the freedom to soar into the skies and reach out to far and wide places. Let your child experience this magic!

I’d like to end this article with one of my favorite quotes by Groucho Marx:-

“I find television to be very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go in the other room and read a book”.

This is a guest article by Mr. S Sathyanarayan. He started writing short stories as a hobby ten years ago. His keen interests include short story writing and chess. He has several short stories all of which were well received. He is also a keen reader of current affairs and fiction. He is employed in the banking industry and lives in Singapore.

You can reach him at: sathyas_suba (at) yahoo (dot) com

  1. chitra says:

    Well said ! As an avid reader, I used to read anything that comes to my hand. I myself has experienced what bad books can do to young minds. When I got some of those Mills & Boon romance books in my hand, at the wrong age, my attention turned away from things i was supposed to do, at that age. Parents have to be really careful in choosing the right book for their kids.

  2. Andrea says:

    Yo! Is it OK that I go a bit off topic? I’m trying to read your blog on my iPod Touch but it doesn’t display properly, any suggestions? Thanks in advance! Andrea

  3. LeeAndLow says:

    If you are looking for books to add to your child’s collection? You can find a great selection of children’s books at
    The have the best books for children of all ages and ethnic backgrounds.

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