I have been giving much thought to inculcating active reading habits in my kids. This skill is really a gift that you can give your child. His Highness Sheik Mohammed bin Rashid, vice president of UAE and Ruler of Dubai has initiated a nationwide campaign via the hashtag #ReadingYear, to encourage reading among the young and with a hope to brainstorm ideas to encourage the same. His Highness Sheik Mohammed tweeted “Our aim is to develop a long-term strategy which makes reading a part of the culture, identity and life of our generations.“We look forward to the contribution of everyone who holds the UAE dear via the hashtag #ReadingYear, even if it is with just one idea". My idea is to start with every home in the UAE, to raise awareness, to cultivate the habit, and to spread the vision.
My top 5 findings
1. Public Library on Al Mankool road allows you to walk in and browse a book for free. They have a dedicated children's sections with a variety of English and Arabic books on offer.
Address and Contact : Public Library on Al Mankool, Al Mankool Road, Dubai, 043277779
2. Dubai is a paradise for foodies, but not all spaces are child-friendly with kids amenities and children's menus.BookMunch a quaint cafe in Al Wasl square, offers a thought and tum provoking setting for a date with your young ones. With tables set up between the bookshelves, with the best collection for kids to fiction and best sellers, this is a perfect setting for story telling and book reading sessions paired with scrumptious food (flag to remember, some items are priced steep on the menu). Kids have a choice to curl up in a chair and enjoy a mouthwatering french toast or lay down on the rug under a book tent, making their reading time fun and entertaining. This is an enriching place to visit with the whole family and designed for kids. Whats amazing about this cafe that feeds the body and mind is the fact that it encourages and points young ones to a direction to discover the nearly lost art of reading books, while they enjoy their yummies. My boys absolutely love this place.
Address and Contact : Book Munch Cafe, Wasl Square, Al Safa Dubai
3. Bookworm right off Jumeirah Beach road is a delightful space for young ones to dive into an adventure filled with story telling, puppet shows and young writers competitions.
Address and Contact : Book worm, Al Wasl Road, Jumeirah, Dubai, 043945770
4. If you are looking for literary budget finds for your little ones and you have a way about the art of haggling,BookWorld is just the right place to head to. This treasure trove of pre-loved books, filled with books from floor to ceiling is tucked away in Satwa. It is not your perfect vision of an organized space, but is filled with interesting finds, for both young and old avid readers.
Address and Contact : Book World, shop# 5 and 6-10/4, Al Bada, Satwa, Dubai 04 3491914
5. Around the corner of my home i discovered Mellow Yellow which boasts of a library cafe scene. They do have a dedicated reading corner with shelves of books, however i must add that it is not a sprawling selection for kids to dive into. You could bring your own or just settle for the selection here as the setting is perfect for family and kids to unwind over a cuppa and a good read
Address and Contact : Mellow Yellow, Up Town Mirdif Mall, Mirdif