Using a categorisation structure to understand interaction in children’s books
Timpany, C., & Vanderschantz, N. (2013). Using a categorisation structure to understand interaction in children’s books. The International Journal of the Book, 10(4), 29-44.
Permanent Research Commons link: https://hdl.handle.net/10289/8352
Children’s books can vary greatly in the type of and depth of interaction that is required from the reader. The types of interaction demanded by different types of books can be explored using contrasting paradigms. Previously Timpany & Vanderschantz (2012) proposed a categorisation of interactive children’s books that used two continuums that took into consideration Physical Enhancement and Content Sequencing. This paper looks at those categorisations made by Timpany & Vanderschantz (2012) and considers how the multitude of formats addresses either the physical or intellectual aspects of children’s reading and how this then may be used to engage the reader. To do this, a database of 132 books was audited to assess the interactivity of these books against those categorisation systems. The range of books surveyed is discussed in terms of what methods are used to create the interaction within each of the interactivity levels and across types of books. Findings from this audit demonstrate interesting interactions between age, physical enhancement versus content sequencing, and the relationship of these to mechanisms for interactivity such as paper engineering, illustration and story structure. The majority of the books in the sample have no interactive qualities on one of the two-categorisation scales. Physically enhanced books were marginally more highly represented on the scale at higher levels of interactivity. Counter intuitively, the physically interactive pop up books were seen to fall predominantly in lower categories (1 or 2) for physical enhancement, while books requiring image search, an intellectual activity, were also predominantly in the lower categories (1 or 2) for content sequencing.
© 2013 Common Ground, Claire Timpany, Nicholas Vanderschantz.