Children’s Literature Shapes Young Minds: Premier Johari Emphasizes Empathy and Responsibility

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Children’s Literature Nurtures Young Minds, says Abang Jo

Children’s Literature Shapes Young Minds Premier Johari Emphasizes Empathy and Responsibility
Children’s Literature Shapes Young Minds Premier Johari Emphasizes Empathy and Responsibility

Premier Johari Emphasizes the Impact of Children’s Literature on Empathy and Responsibility

KUCHING – Premier Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg highlighted the crucial role of children’s literature in shaping young minds, emphasizing its ability to foster empathy, responsibility, and essential reading skills. Speaking at the launch of ‘Jom Kita Bincang: Sustainability, Health and Social Issues’ organized by the Swedish Embassy, Johari emphasized how narratives in children’s books influence societal norms and mindsets.

“By immersing themselves in narratives about the balance of nature, children will develop a deep sense of responsibility towards our planet,” Johari said. He underscored the importance of diverse characters and perspectives in children’s stories, which help cultivate empathy and understanding critical for a democratic society.

Deputy Premier Datuk Amar Dr Sim Kui Hian delivered Johari’s speech during the event held at Sarawak State Library. Johari stressed that children’s literature not only influences early thinking but also enhances reading skills, positioning reading as a gateway to broader education and societal engagement.

“Reading proficiency is in decline in many countries, and it is important to reverse this trend,” Johari noted. He advocated for strengthening children’s access to diverse and engaging books to prepare them for future success across various fields.

Meanwhile, Ambassador of Sweden to Malaysia Dr Joachim Bergstrom highlighted Sweden’s initiative in translating Swedish children’s books into Malay for the Sarawak State Library. He praised Sweden’s long-standing tradition of socially and environmentally conscious children’s literature, emphasizing its role in promoting creativity, diversity, and civil rights.

“These books address crucial topics such as sustainability and bullying, shaping societal values and fostering tolerance,” Bergstrom explained.

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