Izmir University of Economics (TURKEY)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2023 Proceedings
Publication year: 2023
Pages: 1964-1974
ISBN: 978-84-09-49026-4
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2023.0554
Conference name: 17th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 6-8 March, 2023
Location: Valencia, Spain
This study focuses on the analysis of the relationship between children’s library interior designs and reading habits. There has been an increasing interest in children's library interior designs in the world in the past few years due to the advances in information technology and how this materializes in children’s libraries. The increase in this awareness allows children to spend time in these areas and grow up surrounded by books as well as other sources of information. The research is based on the need to increase literacy in Turkey. Compared to advanced counterparts, the low number of libraries designated to children, and the fact that the ones that exist being seldom used is an area needs attention. Several research-based interior design applications demonstrate that, the interior designs of children’s libraries have the potential to create awareness regarding books and motivation to learn in children. However, it has been found that oftentimes, children's libraries are not inclusive, do not attract the necessary interest, are not used as intensely as planned, and are not interesting spaces for children due to design shortcomings and spatial errors. Interior design features have the potential to enable children to experience the environment with varying senses while in the physical space of the library. Moreover, children’s libraries that focus on sustainability, not only draw attention to environmental problems at an early age and to create a green design, they also work to create a spatial experience in an environment that will trigger children’s curiosity. Likewise, interactivity is often useful to attract attention of children, and a way to realize this feature may be to begin reflecting these ideas in the exterior design and continuing them in the interior reflected in different forms in areas of activity. Analyzing past research-based children’s library design and utilizing spatial knowledge and adaptations regarding the COVID_19 pandemic, this paper presents a new approach to the design of a children's library to enhance informal learning. The methods used include the case study investigation of provincial public library in Izmir-Turkey with regards to observations of the space as well as its use by children and adults. The library space was observed on weekdays and weekends, and behavioral maps and observational instruments were used to collect data. The findings show that, the lack of attractiveness of the design starting outside the building continues in the interior. Several functions have given to a single area without taking into account the needs of the children and the requirements of the space. Interviews reflect a wish to make the space more inviting and energetic with the use of interior elements such as, wayfinding, color, and lighting. If the library interior designs are suitable for children’s age and interests, it is believed that they will be intrigued to spend time in that environment. In conclusion, it can be stated that, children’s library interior designs have a significant impact on improving children's personal development and reading habits. This may be effective on reading skills that will last a lifetime as well as literacy levels as a whole. More research is needed in these significant informal learning spaces that have the potential to have lasting effects on reading habits.
Informal learning, reading habits, children’s libraries, children’s environments, interior design.