I just read an article in one of the New York Times “parenting” blogs that said ebooks for kids aren’t as good as books for a child’s learning progress.
The article said “according to Lisa Guernsey of the New America Foundation’s Early Education Initiative, is that when we read with a child on an, we may actually impede our child’s ability to learn.”
Here’s what I say…
Nonsense. Ebooks for kids are still books.
When I read articles by people who think a current technology or method or delivery system is better than an emerging one, I get a mental picture of different generations and how they must have done the same thing. For example…a long time ago, before there were any good and durable ways to keep paper records, people would memorize stories. Then, someone develops papyrus and other tools for writing them down. There were probably some who said “Oh, written words will never convey the feeling and power of the spoken word.”
Then along comes Johannes Gutenburg with a printing press…a way to make lots of copies of the written works. The elite of the day bemoaned the idea that the unwashed masses would now have access to the same great literature they had been able to reserve for themselves. And others figured it would be a passing fancy because those “unwashed” masses wouldn’t be interested.
And now we get to the snazziest delivery system for the written word yet…digital. eBooks for kids are an awesome way for kids to immerse themselves in the story. Not only do they get to see and read the written word…but they can also hear the spoken word again…and also watch a video version of the story…oftentimes from the author who wrote the story.
Talk about connection.
A device will only “get in the way” of reading and learning when an adult doesn’t control the reading experience. Don’t think of “control” as disciplinary tactics…think of it as part of the teaching experience. Just as you wouldn’t send your child down a hiking path without your adult supervision and guidance…don’t send them into the world of digital words alone.
Show them how to use the tools, and be there with them as co-pilot. Sooner than you know, they’ll be airborne into the exciting multimedia galaxy of ebooks for kids…with a quest to reach for the stars around the next turn.
Share this link with everybody you know, so they can jump on the Rhyme and Reason Bandwagon
(My regular emails about the essentials of life, AND some music and other good stuff, for Fa-Ree)