Comic books have gotten a pretty bad rap for a while. They were known as a distraction that kids hid inside the pages of ‘real books’. People saw them as a more simplified version of reading, something that couldn’t offer the same complexity or developmental benefits that ‘serious books’ could. Now comic books or graphic novels are beginning to pop up within the schools, for the use of educational purposes. Parents and educators are starting to see the benefits of the comic book. A lot of the criticism of comic books come from people who think that kids are just looking at the pictures and not putting them together with the words, but, you could easily make some of the same criticisms of picture books. That kids are just looking at pictures and not at the words. There is an abundance of benefits of reading a comic book. The visual nature of graphic novels allows the reader to experience these themes in different ways than just reading a traditional book.
One of the best and most obvious benefits of a graphic novel is that they can and are more fun to read and easier to read than a regular book. Young children defiantly favor that because most young children have to interest in reading a traditional book. A lot of children who hate reading would probably respond well to comic books that are based on movies or TV shows they enjoy, like Tom and Jerry. Graphic novels also give struggling readers confidence. Comic books do not intimidate struggling readers with an overwhelming page of text, instead they have a sentence or two of text and a picture that describes what the text is portraying. Comic books can be helpful for children with learning difficulties as well. Children with autism can learn a lot about identifying emotions through the images within a comic book. My little cousin is autistic and he loves comic books, the only book he will give any attention to.
Comic books can be a great way of learning other events that have happened. Comic books can explore historical events, wildlife, nature, fun tales, maybe even math. For example, if a comic book is about WWI, the story would probably be set in a battle field, using these images to explain important details, such as war scene, clothing, soldiers, guns, death, etc. By taking in both the words and illustrations within a comic, many will obtain the bigger picture more easily than just from a traditional book. There are a ton of comics books out there. Graphic novels are not just about superheroes and villains. They are certainly not just for boys or a girls either. Comic books and graphic novels are spread across many different genres. Some examples are comedy, science fiction, fantasy, and drama. There is something for every age and reading level.
Comic books are everywhere today, on the bookshelf at home or on the teacher’s desk waiting to discuss it with the class. Comic books are great for educational purposes; I have learned a lot about comic books during my time in college. I never read comic books until now, I only used to ‘read’ picture books. I never liked to read and still continue to dislike reading, so comic books are fun for me because I love looking at the pictures and reading the small text box, instead of a huge paragraph. Comic books are reappearing. They were popular with the superhero’s, but now there is about a comic book about every subject you can think off.