“Not enough Chinese books for young children.”

“The standard of overseas Chinese books is too high for our kids!”

“My own Chinese is not good enough to know all of the words!”

If you have had these grouses before, a Made In Singapore Chinese illustrated book collection that has quietly topped POPULAR bookstore’s bestseller charts since 2015, may be the answer.


Here’s the bottom line about the “I Love Reading” Collection Series 【我爱阅读】:

  • Produced by the non-profit Chou Sing Chu Foundation, it adheres to the Singapore Chinese Language Primary Syllabus (Foundation is affiliated to POPULAR Holdings)
  • Each book contains 4 short stories with vivid illustrations (bitesize & colorful enough for kids who are not crazy about Chinese)
  • Key or new words come with Hanyu Pinyin (hooray!)
  • Comes with English language summary to help both parents and kids along in their understanding of the stories
  • Chinese to English translation for key words
  • Has the Singapore Centre for Chinese Language as its language consultant (don’t play play)

Sounds good so far?


Well, I checked out the series with my brood (12, 10 and 7), and here’s my verdict:

  •  At $6.90 – $7.90 per copy, it is reasonably affordable
  • It is fairly easy for my 12-year-old, some new words for my 10-year-old, and my 7-year-old needs a lot of help to get through the books
  • The illustrations are a big draw for the kids
  • Suitable for K1 to lower primary kids

What’s missing: An audio guide for parents who really cannot read Chinese.

But don’t take my word for it. I have enlisted the help of 3 parents and their little ones, to share their reviews.

Look out for series 4 which is launching in October 2018!


Lim Li Li with Faith, 7

1. What are the 3 things you like about this series?
  • I like that at the end of the story, moral of the story was provided to enable parent-child discussion.
  • The choice of words with simple idioms are vivid and interesting. The humorous plots draw the attention of kids. The illustrative art is lively too.
  • Each story is not too long, hence the child won’t find it too challenging to complete one story.

2. Any area (s) for improvement?

  • In order for lower primary kids to read independently, Hanyu Pinyin should be provided for the entire story.
  • The glossary provided is good with English translations, but will be even better if the glossary is provided right after each story, instead of at the end of the book.

3. How do you make use of the books?

  • I read one story with her daily, then we will discuss the moral of the story.  I also get her to memorise the interesting idioms or phrase. She is able to read the majority of the content, but she did ask for Hanyu Pinyin for all words, so she can read on her own.

4. What’s your rating?

  • Parent’s rating – 3.5/5
  • Child’s rating – 4/5


Yat Soon, with Ethan, 8, and Dylan, 3
1. What are the 3 things you like about this series?
  • Stories are interesting and easy to understand, not too overwhelming.
  • Each story has a learning point or moral that the child can easily understand.
  • Visually interesting as different fonts and colours are used to accentuate certain content.
2. Any area (s) for improvement?
  • Ethan said the stories could be slightly longer.
  • Ethan says it would be better to provide more sample sentences (例句)for the new words.
3. How do you make use of the books?
  • I mainly let him read independently on his own, but he needs to flag out words that he cannot read.
  • I also get him to read aloud to me, to practise for Oral (laughs).
4. What’s your rating?
  • Parent’s rating – 4/5
  • Child’s rating – 4.5/5

Rosine Eng with Ashlyn, 7. 

1. What are the 3 things you like about this series?
  • Easy to understand as the stories are short and simple.
  • Every story teaches good values.
  • Colourful and captivating illustration makes it a more interesting read for young readers.

2. Any area (s) for improvement?

  • Hope there are more stories within the book.
3. How do you make use of the books?
  • I use it as a practical example to teach good values. At the end of each story, I can teach my child new words and meaning.
  • She can read it, but with some assistance.

4. What’s your rating?

  • Parent’s rating – 4/5
  • Child’s rating – 5/5

 * Special thanks to Lim Li Li for helping out in this story!


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