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Old 08-24-2010, 07:05 PM   #1
ManosHandsOfFate
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Kids and Reading - Can E-books Be A Vector?

I read somewhere (so take this with a grain of salt) that parents who read lot tend to have reading children. My parents were both readers and both my sister and myself are readers.

My wife is a reader.

I have a baby daughter and would love for her to be a reader.

Will reading e-books in front of my daughter have the same impact as reading a pbook? Or will the impact of book reading become lost in the flotsam of digital devices lying around the house?

"Daddy's just looking at another screen. . ."
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Old 08-24-2010, 07:09 PM   #2
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I know I gained my love of reading from being read to before I was able to read...
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Old 08-24-2010, 07:37 PM   #3
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I think it will have a similar impact. My 2 1/2 year old recognises that when I have my ereader that I am reading (and occasionally he grabs his book and sits next to me) . Having a child growing up seeing their parents read definitely has a positive impact to encouraging children to read, but personally I feel (and this we do with our 2 1/2 and 8 month old) we actively read to them.

So in short, it is one thing for a child to see their parents doing something, but IMHO it is more powerful for the child to be directly involved with the parents doing something.
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Old 08-24-2010, 09:43 PM   #4
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It's a question I've asked myself, actually. I only got my DX this year, so my child's formative 1-5 years were spent watching me with DTBs, and he is a formidable reader. (Reading at 3rd-4th grade level at 6 years old.) He certainly is aware that I'm reading when I'm staring at the Kindle, though whether he would have been AS aware at 1-2-3 years old, I can't know.

That said, the process of reading with him was more important to his development than him watching me read, I think. Me reading books to him, and following the words with my fingers so he could see each word as I read it, helped him to learn quickly, and get him excited about stories. That might be the same process with an ereader, but it'd probably have to be an ereader with good picture display, like an iPad, since very young readers respond so strongly to illustrations. JMHO.
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Old 08-25-2010, 12:38 AM   #5
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Hmm.. interesting. My three kids are all big readers (to the point where I have to take books away from them so they can walk down a hallway or brush their teeth in under an hour), and I am a huge reader. They are very aware that the things Iʻm reading are books, and my oldest son (10yo) wants his own ereader.

That being said, they watched me read pbooks for years before I ever got a reader, so I donʻt know if they would have made the book connection if Iʻd be reading something electronic from the beginning. They may if I occasionally read to them out of the reader (choosing an appropriate book, of course!).
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Old 08-25-2010, 04:46 AM   #6
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I read, my parents, grandparents read.

Being read to and having no TV when I was young were probably big facters.

My sister, at 58 has never read a book or even a newspaper other than the TV Guide section. She occasionally reads tabloid magazines though.

I cannot imagine not reading for pleasure, but many intelligent literate people cannot see the point.

Each to their own I guess.
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Old 08-25-2010, 07:45 AM   #7
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I guess I'm the exception that proves the rule. My parents both hated reading. My mother, who is still alive, when I told her I'd bought myself a reader mused about buying one for herself and then admitted that she'd probably never use it since she doesn't like to read. And yet, I grew up a total bookworm. . .go figure.
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Old 08-25-2010, 07:54 AM   #8
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My parents never read novels and I cannot recollect my sister doing so either, I was the only one in the family to do so....and the habit has never waned.
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Old 08-25-2010, 08:01 AM   #9
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My parents taught me a great respect for books. We had a large library at home and we were always encouraged to read. I've always read the same things as my older brother did (2 years my senior), so I've always read above my age, so to speak. I was reading "adult" books by the time I was 12...

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Originally Posted by GraceKrispy View Post
Hmm.. interesting. My three kids are all big readers (to the point where I have to take books away from them so they can walk down a hallway or brush their teeth in under an hour),
I'd have loved a backlit device back then! I always had to read, sneaky!, underneath the blanket with a flashlight! And often my mother had to order me to come downstairs and watch tv with the rest of the family (I preferred to read in my bedroom). For as long as I can remember, I always had a book within easy reach, no matter where I was.
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Old 08-25-2010, 08:45 AM   #10
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My parents taught me a great respect for books. We had a large library at home and we were always encouraged to read. I've always read the same things as my older brother did (2 years my senior), so I've always read above my age, so to speak. I was reading "adult" books by the time I was 12...



I'd have loved a backlit device back then! I always had to read, sneaky!, underneath the blanket with a flashlight! And often my mother had to order me to come downstairs and watch tv with the rest of the family (I preferred to read in my bedroom). For as long as I can remember, I always had a book within easy reach, no matter where I was.
didn't we all ?
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Old 08-25-2010, 11:31 AM   #11
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I have a 6 month old, and I've read to her from day one. At first it was so she could hear my voice and get used to language (and I was usually reading while holding her anyway, since very small babies are not as interactive as older ones). I've read to her both from my Kindle and from paper books. She doesn't yet have fine enough motor control to be able to turn pages in paper books without ripping them to pieces, but she LOVES to turn pages in board books, and she seems to understand that pushing a button on the Kindle also turns the page (or at least understands that she's mimicking me), because she's constantly trying to push the left-side Next Page button while I'm reading aloud to her.

I don't think it's so much in the motion of turning a page, but more in the act itself: sitting still while following along with the words on the page. Sure, to us reading always meant turning a page, but kids are quick to adapt. To them, they'll "get" that this new thing is also reading.
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Old 08-25-2010, 11:51 AM   #12
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I'm not sure -- that's a good question. My two youngest family members (10 months and 2 years) both love their books, but I think they love them as OBJECTS as well as for the entertainment value of being read to. They both have toys that mimic grown-up electronic devices, too, but I think as far as the books go (at least for now), the manipulation of the book itself is part of the pleasure, and of the learning experience. So I guess what I think is that even if we read primarily e-books as adults, it's important to make sure that children have hands-on access to actual p-books early on. I'm just not sure that if I hadn't started out with a love for actual books I would have been able to make the transition to e-books so easily.

Good question, though.

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Old 08-25-2010, 12:57 PM   #13
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My parents are immigrants who didn't read to their kids. I started learning English in school, then learned to read. I grew up and became an editor.
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Old 08-25-2010, 02:37 PM   #14
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I have heard varying comments on ebooks from mothers I know---I was quite surprised that some of them were already using them with toddlers and had legitimate reasons/uses. Personally, I do think that books for small children are about more than just words. As a teacher, I have done evaluations on reading readiness in small children where we look at things like do they use the pictures for clues, do they know which way the pages go etc. These are important skills/concepts for them to learn.

My personal feeling right now (and this may change if I ever have kids) is that paper books are still superior for kids until they get to the chapter book stage and at that point, I would happily introduce an e-reader. As far as them witnessing me with it, I think they would readily understand that my ebook reader is a more grown-up 'book' the same way I used to look at my mother's boring-looking, picture-free hardbacks and understand that those were not yet books for me and that books for adults looked different than books for kids.
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Old 08-25-2010, 02:43 PM   #15
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I have heard varying comments on ebooks from mothers I know---I was quite surprised that some of them were already using them with toddlers and had legitimate reasons/uses. Personally, I do think that books for small children are about more than just words. As a teacher, I have done evaluations on reading readiness in small children where we look at things like do they use the pictures for clues, do they know which way the pages go etc. These are important skills/concepts for them to learn.

My personal feeling right now (and this may change if I ever have kids) is that paper books are still superior for kids until they get to the chapter book stage and at that point, I would happily introduce an e-reader. As far as them witnessing me with it, I think they would readily understand that my ebook reader is a more grown-up 'book' the same way I used to look at my mother's boring-looking, picture-free hardbacks and understand that those were not yet books for me and that books for adults looked different than books for kids.
That's what I was trying to say, but I got too wrapped around the axle. Thank you!
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