The comic series that's improving literacy and learning for children

If you are a parent and your child has trouble with reading or learning, then these 12 educational comics that surfaced just a few years back could be the answer you’ve been looking for.

Many parents have asked themselves the question of “How can I help my child’s reading?” or “What do I do about my child being bored at school?” Dekko Comics is a series of comics that catches readers’ attention through the sensory visuals and concision of the comic format, which makes the reading easier to digest while also hooking their interest.

Dekko uses entertainment and humour to make the stories and images memorable, and thus the school subject facts WITHIN the stories much easier to remember too. 

Officially launching their series of school-curriculum comics in September 2016, Dekko Comics have gone on to be used in over 50 schools across the UK and have sold thousands of copies to parents.

Going international in 2018, Dekko has been receiving orders from countries such as New Zealand, Australia, Finland and the USA.

Whether it’s KS2 English and literacy support, KS3 Maths refreshers, or just general reading help, Dekko Comics have been utilised for multiple functions, receiving overwhelmingly positive reviews. 

Fantastic! So visual and appeals to all styles of learning, especially visual learners.
— Primary School Teacher, Glasgow
Her whole Year 7 revision has been done from your comic this weekend. What made my day was I had to ask my daughter to STOP reading edition [Issue] 3 in the car but she said, “I find reading this comic like being in a ditch - easy to get in but so difficult to get out!”
— Parent of Dekko Reader
Year 5 trade them under the desks like contraband ... The feedback from the children has been completely positive and they seem to have appealed to all kinds of people ... readers looking for humour are giggling but also coming to tell me what they’ve learned; and non-fiction fans absolutely love them wholesale.
— School Library Manager, Lancashire

Dekko seems to understand that many children who don’t enjoy reading and learning CAN enjoy it if they are effectively motivated.

Entertainment can powerfully engage a child who might otherwise be put off a book or lesson because of the wall of text they need to break through in order to access the information, or by the school classes where the information is given to them with nothing to stimulate their interest. 

What seems to make Dekko Comics revolutionary is not so much turning education into a comic format, which (although arguably under-explored) has been done before.

Rossie Stone, the creator and founder of Dekko Comics Ltd, says that the key to why Dekko makes such an impact on its readers is its focus on “entertainment before education”.

The comics are based on a technique I used for myself to overcome my school struggles with dyslexia. By turning my study notes into comics I managed to turn my grades from an expected D or C into my first academic grade A. My philosophy was to make it as entertaining for myself as possible, to make me care about what I was reading and help me memorise it through engaging visuals and narrative rather than just relying on my reading ability.
— Rossie Stone, Creator and Founder of Dekko Comics
Back cover for Dekko Comics Issue 12, explaining what topics are covered in this 36-page issue.

Back cover for Dekko Comics Issue 12, explaining what topics are covered in this 36-page issue.

The comics cover all relevant school topics: Maths, English and Science are primarily covered, but subjects such as History, Geography, Languages (French and German) and PSHE are featured too.

Between the twelve available comic issues, they cover curriculum topics best suited for children aged between 9 to 12, (Key Stage 2, if you’re in England). 

Senior Lecturer in English Literature at the University of Glasgow, Alex Benchimol, after reviewing them back in 2016 said that Dekko Comics (though aimed at a younger audience) were even worthy as refresher material for student level studies: “…this is a very impressive set of learning tools that is presented in a visually exciting and humorous manner […] I think it would even benefit those in the final years of high school heading to university, if presented as a means to refresh understanding...”

Since 2016, Dekko has gone on to win awards for its work such as the prestigious Young Edge Award in Scotland, while also being featured on BBC News, Understood.org (USA), STV Scotland, and BBC Radio Scotland — and the days are still early for this young independent company.

Sir Ken Robinson, TED Talk icon and international education advisor, has openly tweeted about the comics, calling them “enjoyable and engaging for all ages and abilities.”

Indeed the comics have proven to be particularly helpful resources for children with forms of dyslexia, autism and ADHD, allowing them to learn at a pace and accessibility more similar to their class peers. This is due to the sensory benefits of the approach, according to Mr Stone, as well as “tackling the stigma around learning difficulties in class”.

The company hasn’t been without its start-up struggles, with Dekko recently having to put a temporary pause on its monthly subscriptions. But Mr Stone, while having plans for expansion, is keen to hold onto the company’s independence so as to preserve the trademark focus on entertainment-first without it being tampered with, which he says is the “key ingredient to getting this initiative right.”

Dekko Comics issues 1–12 are available for purchase and delivery on the official website, dekkocomics.com. You can order your first set, or the full collection by clicking on the buttons below: