During the early part of the 1900s, the only book available for Filipino children was the caton or cartilla--an instructional book on the Roman alphabet. When the Americans came, they introduced Filipino readers to Aesop's Fables, Mark Twain's Tom Sawyer, Lewis Carrol's Alice in Wonderland, and many others. After some time, local folktales were adapted to cope with the lack of reading materials for children. Severino Reyes--more popularly known as Lola Basyang--started by writing a series of tales in Liwayway Magazine. Camilo Osias and Juan C. Laya soon followed by publishing supplementary materials for students in elementary and high school. With these books serving as precursors to children's literature, readership and learning soon flourished in the country.
Over the past years, there have been significant efforts to uplift children's literature in the Philippines. In line with this great cause, WikiPilipinas presents the Philippine children's literature portal Chikiting. Chikiting compiles information on local children's books published throughout history. Featured in this portal are prolific authors, illustrators, and storytellers. Through Chikiting, WikiPilipinas lauds the efforts of the country's leading children's book publishers and organizations. WikiPilipinas joins them in working to raise readership and learning in the Philippines.
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