Pakistan Literacy Project

Latest from PLP - A Wonderland of Imagination Unveiled: 15 New Children's Books launched at the Pakistan Learning Conference, Book Fair and Festival in Islamabad "Today's Readers Tomorrow's Learners"

With Room to Read’s technical assistance for the Pakistan Literacy Project and three Publishers National Book Foundation (NBF), Alif Laila Book Bus Society (ALBBS) and Maqbool Academy (MA), Idara-e-Taleem-o-Aagahi (ITA) launched 15 beautifully illustrated new books for children at primary level across Pakistan during the Pakistan Learning Conference, Book Fair and Festival “Today’s Readers Tomorrow’s Learners” 25-27, Nov. 2023 at the Pak China Friendship Center in Islamabad. The Federal Minister for Education Madad Ali Sindhi inaugurated and welcomed the 15 new children’s books at the Inaugural session on November 25, 2023 in front of a packed audience.

A Diverse Tapestry of Stories: All three publishers presented a rich array of stories, spanning genres that explore the vibrant cultures of Pakistan – from the enchanting wool of Chitral’s remote mountains to Bhavna’s quest for her friend in Tharparkar, Sindh. The narratives weave relatable daily life events like nani’s sewing, a passion for gardening, and the thrill of uncovering secrets.

Transporting readers to a magical realm, stories feature characters like Detective Hawk/Jasoos Uqaab, the banana-troubled Chutki the monkey, and a young bear grappling with school-related anxiety. Even inanimate objects like dry fruits, vegetables, fruits, and bhel puri ingredients come to life, spreading joy.

Beautifully illustrated, these tales aspire to cultivate a love for reading and curiosity among children.

Interactive Discussions with Creators: With the video messages from our technical partners Joel Bacha, Senior Director, Program Operations, and Mahesh Pathirathna, Asia Regional Program Manager, Room to Read the highlight of the event was the interactive discussions with the authors and illustrators. Moderated by experts in the field, Saleem Mughal, Rumana Husain and Dr. Najeeba Arif, these discussions provided a behind-the-scenes look at the creative process of producing children’s literature. They were also part of the Read Aloud sessions at the Storytelling Hub called Kahani Kunj at the festival where everyone was welcomed for share and read stories with expression

Authors shared their inspirations, challenges, and the joy of creating stories for young minds. Illustrators, on the other hand, provided insights into the visual elements, emphasizing the importance of captivating imagery in children.

Engaging the Young Audience: To make the event truly interactive, the new titles were read aloud to the audience, bringing the characters to life for 1000s of young listeners. Additionally, various activities such as drawing sessions and storytelling workshops allowed children to actively participate in the enchanting world of the stories.

Story Walks: Each book from each publisher namely Katran Kahani, Dhoondo Dhoondo Sohni Dharti, and Chutki  and Jasus Uqaab had its own life sized Story Walk placed near the entrance, providing an exciting opportunity for children to engage with the narratives as they walked into the learning festival site. These Story Walks featured large panels and character cutouts, creating an immersive experience where children could interact with the stories in a dynamic and visual way. These installations not only added a playful element to the event but also encouraged active participation, allowing children to step into another world.

The book launch event was not merely a presentation of stories but a celebration of creativity, and playful learning; they are a testament to the enduring power of storytelling in Pakistan like anywhere else in the world. The 15 new children’s books are now ready to find their way into the hearts of young readers in schools, homes and the community, leaving an indelible mark on their imaginations and inspiring a new generation of storytellers.


Farah Shah
ITA. Email:

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PLP has established child-friendly Library rooms in 24 primary schools (12 in Bahawalpur and 12 in Lahore) and the establishment of classroom library corners in 10 more schools (05 in Bahawalpur and 05 in Lahore).

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