Sanskrit Literature For Children
Need for Children’s Literature in Sanskrit
Currently, in the field of Sanskrit, there is very limited material available which introduces Sanskrit to the children of various age groups in a systematic as well as fascinating manner. We hardly find a book of rhymes in Sanskrit, a book or any other material introducing Sanskrit alphabets with a scientific approach, a book of puzzles, a set of games or flash cards introducing various aspects of the language or well-illustrated colorful books of stories in Sanskrit. There is a dearth of audio-visual materials which children can listen to and watch, neither are there any Sanskrit children’s magazines with a wide readership.
Due to the limited availability of Sanskrit reading material meant for children in the Indian market, there is a great need to bring out good quality children’s literature that can be easily available to children of all ages. Essential qualities of qualitative literature encompass the following:
- Creativity, originality, and importance of ideas
- Imaginative use of language
- The beauty of literary and artistic style
- Covering topics of relevance and interests to children of specific age groups, through prose and poetry, fiction and nonfiction.
- Offering enjoyment to readers by bringing forth memorable characters and situations that give valuable insights into the human condition.
It is with this need in mind that the Samskrita Balasahitya Parishad is endeavoring to prepare materials to bring Sanskrit to children in various innovative ways.
Scope of Children’s Literature in Sanskrit
The scope of this mammoth task includes, but is not limited to, the following:
- Networking and building relationships with other organizations and individuals working in the field of creating children’s literature in Sanskrit.
- Building an exhaustive compilation of the available children’s literature in Sanskrit that will be made available to all schools and other organizations propagating Sanskrit.
- Setting up a central library of children’s literature in Sanskrit in Pondicherry.
- Making a few dictionaries or shabdakoshas available that would help to create children’s literature in Sanskrit and will be especially beneficial for children to create their own literature in Sanskrit.
- Working on all that is available in our ancient literature on the subject of children, their svabhaava and svadharma.
- Bringing out a monthly children’s magazine in Sanskrit.
- Translating available children’s literature from other Indian and foreign languages into Sanskrit.
- To prepare the following materials under the following categories to bring Sanskrit to children in various innovative ways:
- Books, games and other teaching aids for children, which include books of rhymes (with audio), books of songs (with audio), books of songs (with audio) and books of puzzles and riddles.
- Comics, cartoons and famous Sanskrit stories that bring in the elements of humor and inspiration.
- Conversational aides and promotion of Sanskrit, including the pictorial book of conversations, pictorial word book and, printed posters and stickers.
- Multi-media which covers films that are inspirational and animated as well as games with introductory booklets.
- Materials to aid teachers at nursery & primary school level
- Books on prayers and mantra
SAFIC had received a grant of Rupees Seven Lakhs from Rashtriya Sanskrit Sansthan for publishing 10 Sanskrit books for children.
SAFIC is currently working on completing 4 books. These will be published and available in market by Aug 2019. Work is also going on for 6 more books, which should be available by August 2020. All these books include specially commissioned literary work and artwork. Because these books are meant for children, special attention is given to include artwork and illustrations which are not only attractive for the children but are also elevating.
Four books ready to be published are:
- Hasya Manjari – book of humorous stories for children (Author: Sampadananda Mishra)
- Nishigandha – an illustrated storybook (Author: Rushi Raj Jani)
- Kathamadhuri – a book of stories (Author: Asha Agarwal)
- Gitagunjanam – book of songs for children (Author: Devi Sahay Pandey)