Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Teacher Resource: The International Children’s Digital Library

Since I discovered this site, I have been so excited to share it with everyone! The International Children’s Digital Library (ICDL Foundation) is rich with a diverse collection of multicultural children’s literature. In this mobile society, ICDL believes that it is every child’s (and family’s) right to have access to books of their native culture “regardless of where they live.” They quote on their website, a 2005 paper published by UNESCO, which states that "Denial to access to information in one's mother tongue is equivalent to a denial of a human right." (YES!!)

Why is it that so many feel that to acknowledge one culture is to deny another? Why can we not embrace both the richness of our heritage AND the beauty of our present society? Why is it wrong to excel at more than one language? Surely this is something to be celebrated rather than punished. Well, apparently the wonderful staff at ICDL feel the same way.

So to provide children around the world with the opportunity to connect with their mother tongue, ICDL is working to create an extraordinary collection of literature from around the world. Currently, the collection has grown to include 4431 books in 54 languages.

They describe their mission as being “to support the world's children in becoming effective members of the global community - who exhibit tolerance and respect for diverse cultures, languages and ideas -- by making the best in children's literature available online free of charge. The Foundation pursues its vision by building a digital library of outstanding children's books from around the world and supporting communities of children and adults in exploring and using this literature through innovative technology designed in close partnership with children for children.”


So, let’s get you started! This website is a pleasure to explore, full of hidden treasures that will thrill any child or parent. You may begin using their Simple Search interface and simply click on a button to refine your search. You can search by age, language, country, fiction/non-fiction, length, characters, picture vs. chapter books, author, award winning, or collection. They also have special exhibitions that focus on themes and have accompanying activities. (Check out “Strong Women and Girls Make the World Go Round”.)

Now, like I said, the site has books available in almost ANY language, but for our purposes, here is the link to their books in Spanish for children ages three to five. There are 77 books currently available, like El caballito de palo. What a fantastic source of multicultural children’s literature this has turned out to be!

I would strongly recommend the International Children’s Digital Library for ALL families (obviously) for its diversity of children’s books from around the world. How fortunate for all of us to have such a dynamic tool at our fingertips!

And because I love this site so much, I will be incorporating reviews of their books into our sister site, the Latin Baby Book Club, so I’ll let you know when the first one runs. I hope you all enjoy this resource as much as I do!

Con mucho cariño…


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...