‘Sparks of Superpowers’ — UNICEF presents book of fairy tales to develop preschool skills

03 June 2024
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UNICEF

KYIV, 3 June 2024—At this year's Book Arsenal, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in Ukraine introduced a collection of educational and developmental stories entitled ‘Sparks of Superpowers’. These stories aim to help children aged 2 to 6 to better interact with peers and adults, understand their emotions, explore the world around them and acquire other essential skills.

The book contains 16 fairy tales, featuring characters known as the Sparks – Mio, Pum, Bryn and Zhuzh – who are already beloved by hundreds of thousands of children. These characters encounter everyday situations familiar to all children and use their ‘superpowers’, or knowledge and skills. As children identify with the fairy tale characters' actions, they also gain new ‘superpowers’ from these engaging and clever stories.

"Even though the war disrupts education in kindergartens, the development of preschoolers must continue,” said Munir Mammadzade, UNICEF Representative to Ukraine. “UNICEF is constantly creating alternative tools for parents, caregivers and educators to use in kindergartens, at home and elsewhere. We want every child, regardless of their circumstances, to have age-appropriate development opportunities.”

In the 16 engaging stories, children learn essential skills appropriate for their age, such as understanding sensory perception, emotions, creativity, safe behaviour, independence, responsibility and interacting with adults. Each story is paired with captivating exercises and activities to reinforce these skills.

The book is available in three formats – print, electronic and audio – allowing children and adults to enjoy the stories in their preferred way.

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UNICEF

UNICEF will distribute free printed copies to parents of preschool children and kindergarten teachers in frontline areas of Ukraine during the summer reading period. The electronic and audio versions can be accessed, listened to and downloaded on the NUMO platformUNICEF Ukraine YouTube channel, and resources like YakabooMEGOGOListen and Abuk.

UNICEF advocates for inclusive education and supports the Ukrainian Government in creating an accessible educational environment for all. The electronic version of ‘Sparks of Superpowers’ uses the Barrier Free font, adhering to accessibility standards, and the Cyrillic Inclusion UKR font, designed to aid children with dyslexia in mastering reading skills.

The audio version features narration by famous Ukrainian parents – Svitlana Tarabarova, Timur Miroshnychenko, Katya Blestka and Artem Logay. Ukrainian writers Maria Artemenko, Nastia Muzychenko and Halyna Tkachuk authored the fairy tales, with psychological and pedagogical guidance from Svitlana Royz and Solomiya Boykovych.

UNICEF

Information:

The ‘Sparks of Superpowers’ book is part of the NUMO preschool development initiative, implemented by UNICEF in collaboration with the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine. ‘Sparks of Superpowers’ offers a variety of free educational tools and methods for preschool children's development, including puppet theatre, colouring books, a series of cartoons and a book of fairy tales. These resources were created by a team of UNICEF experts in Ukraine, supported by the Ministry of Education and Science, specifically for the NUMO preschool development platform.

The primary objective of the programme is to support the daily development of preschool children in all circumstances, including during times of war. These innovative tools are designed to help parents, guardians, educators and public sector workers find creative and effective approaches to ensuring quality preschool education and development.

To help children develop 16 skills that are important for a child aged 3 to 6 years, UNICEF, together with the Ministry of Education and Science, has launched:

  • The NUMO education platform for the development of preschool children, presenting preschool skills in a simple, understandable way with practical tips and exercises;
  • A free offline application with interactive games for preschool children, everyday tips for parents and materials that will contribute to the harmonious development of children;
  • The online kindergarten NUMO, featuring educational and developmental videos about the environment, various experiments and physical activities for children aged 3 to 6;
  • A Viber or Telegram chatbot that works as a planner.

In 2022, over 5 million people used NUMO services for preschoolers' development. 

Media contacts

Oleksandra Burynska
Communications Specialist
UNICEF Ukraine

About UNICEF

UNICEF works in some of the world’s toughest places, to reach the world’s most disadvantaged children. Across 190 countries and territories, we work for every child, everywhere, to build a better world for everyone. For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.org  

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