Sharjah ( PR)
Most of us agree that no two brains are alike, there are many types of learners, and there are multiple pathways to the brain. Then why do we expect all children to learn in one, unidimensional way? What may work for some, may not work at all for some others.
Bringing this idea to the Sharjah Children’s reading Festival (SCRF 2019) audience was visual learning specialist and a children’s book author, Stuart J. Murphy.
Murphy explained that for the most part of this life, he saw that mathematics was one subject the stuck out like a sore thumb – most children didn’t take to it. This became the inspiration for his first book, The Best Bug Parade, which he wrote at the age of 46, presenting mathematical concepts in the context of stories, to get children excited about the subject. Engaging children in storytelling through different pitch and voice modulation techniques, Murphy went onto to quiz the young ones about basic calculations like addition and subtraction by embedding these mathematical learnings in attractive stories.
“A lot of people think that they can tell a story though words, others feel they can create a story by developing pictures and illustrations, but how often people don’t think of merging storytelling with math?” he noted.
Emphasising on the idea of dimension and scale in children’s writing and exploring creativity by incorporating the elements of ‘arts in math’, S.T.E.A.M (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics), Murphy said its perhaps the most opportune time in the history of education to explore ways to make learning fun for children.
Throwing light on the writing process especially for children, Murphy has advised aspiring writers who want to explore and add to this interesting genre of children’s literature to first record their ideas, then plan a storyboard, think about their audience, draft and redraft using the method of loud reading.
SCRF 2019 is hosting an array of authors and speakers from around the world, who are conducting interactive workshops to advance children’s knowledge and expand their creative horizons. The 11-day cultural extravaganza for children and young adults organised by Sharjah Book Authority (SBA) concludes this Saturday, April 27.