Getting kids hooked on reading with mystery

Updated: 2013-04-07 11:19

By Mariella Radaelli (China Daily)

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Getting kids hooked on reading with mystery

A Mystery for You and the Tiger Team has been widely translated and has grabbed the attention of young Chinese readers.[Photo/Xinhua]

Another show based on his books, Tom Turbo, is now in its twentieth season. Overall, Brezina's stories have led to the creation of 40 different TV shows, mostly for Austrian television.

Brezina's books are interactive and have a special decoder attached. Sometimes, they include activities for the young readers, who are introduced to the use of the decoder and other special features of the books directly at the bookstore.

A big believer in reading aloud to children, he has performed many public readings, including in China. "I have been to China twice. I have always had a great time there," he says.

"Chinese kids told me that the three Tiger-Kids in the books are role models for them. They love their courage and independence. I love describing kids who go on big adventures and have to prove their courage and wit."

The characters in Brezina's books are usually based on someone he's met or children he knows, with a part of himself in there too.

"Everything I see or experience can possibly trigger something new."

In his own childhood Brezina says he was something of an "outsider", more interested in puppet theater and stories than soccer.

He does not have children of his own. "But you never know," says Brezina, who has been the official ambassador of UNICEF Austria since 1996.

One of his concerns is children's education.

"It's too focused on knowledge and discipline," he says. "We should provide more education for the soul and the heart. Social skills should become a subject in school and we as adults should teach kids the art of happiness."

For China Daily

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