5 Interactive Features Every Digital Children’s Book Should Have

Features Every Digital Childrens Book

Interactive children’s books captivate young readers, encourage engagement, and nurture a love for reading. They offer a variety of interactive enhancements, such as touch-and-feel textures and pop-ups.

Contingent features, which provide feedback based on children’s touch or answers to questions, improved story recall and comprehension in one study. However, incongruent interactivity also draws children’s attention from the narrative to games and other activities.

Animated and Floating Images

While interactive features may enhance motivation, they distract readers from reading. It would be especially true if the interactive features were more consistent and different from the story. In a study of 4-6-year-old children who listened to an animated and a static storybook, the results showed that when a text had animations that were well matched with the narrative, students better understood the story and made more detailed retellings.

The book “Sir Charlie Stinky Socks and the Really Big Adventure” provides readers with an interactive and engaging experience by incorporating words and illustrations of different animals. It makes the reading experience more immersive and enjoyable, promoting a love for reading and learning. However, these in-text interactions are limited and brief. Out-of-text interactions include a coloring feature set to music and the ability to move words around the screen.


While print and visual modes of communication are prominent aspects of children’s books, many digital titles creatively incorporate audio, gestural, and spatial modes. This multimodal approach helps prepare students for an increasingly multimodal world and can help readers make meaning in ways that are not always visible.

Some interactive picture e-books feature background music that synchronizes with the illustrations. Adding these can bring additional enjoyment and engagement for kids during reading. However, if the book’s interactivity features channel a child’s attention away from the text, the reader may struggle to make meaningful inferences or comprehend difficult words. That is why teachers must choose books with carefully considered and well-placed interactions. For example, digital childrens books New York, NY, introduce basic physics concepts such as push and pull with interactive videos that appear over the text rather than distracting kids from their reading.


Videos and audio add another layer of interactivity to the reading experience. They can be incorporated into the book as supplemental content or even replace some text in some instances.

For example, readers can touch wiggly woos to make them chirp and flutter around the screen, while in some stories, birds fly and sounds play. 

The book’s storytime channel offers video read-a-longs by children’s authors and others. Goodnight with Dolly features Dolly Parton reading her Imagination Library selections to kids before bedtime. Many e-book sites allow readers to record and share their stories, artwork, drawings, and ideas.


Gameplay, or how a player interacts with the game, is a critical feature that can be added to digital children’s books. It can be done in various ways, from the traditional click-and-drag to simple animations.

While it is a common belief that interactive features require advanced technological skills, many are easy to use. Some examples include interactive quizzes, puzzles, games, and interactive navigation.

Another type of interactive feature is contingent feedback, which offers users personalized responses based on their engagement with the book. This feature can promote the dual coding of text and non-textual information and enhance reading comprehension. Examples include highlighting the characters’ names or providing information about their roles in the story.

Social Media Integration

The global interactive children’s book market is expected to observe prominent growth supported by various innovative technologies and features. These features provide readers with fresh, engaging reading experiences and cater to their interests and needs.

For example, in the e-book, a child can interact with the story by pressing on colorful dots that transition into different graphics. These interactions support and extend comprehension without distracting the reader from the main text.

However, hypermedia features can be disruptive if they distract students from the text. It can slow students’ reading rate and reduce comprehension when they spend too much time interacting with the feature.

Sarah Harris

Sarah Harris: A passionate educator dedicated to inspiring learning through creativity and technology. Making education engaging and accessible for all.

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