Parents Avoiding E-Books for Young Children

Parents are putting down the tablets, smartphones, and other e-readers when it’s time to read to their kids, The New York Times is reporting.  The article reveals that even parents who are loyal device readers themselves turn to old-fashioned “dead-tree” books at storytime:

This is the case even with parents who themselves are die-hard downloaders of books onto Kindles, iPads, laptops and phones. They freely acknowledge their digital double standard, saying they want their children to be surrounded by print books, to experience turning physical pages as they learn about shapes, colors and animals.

Parents also say they like cuddling up with their child and a book, and fear that a shiny gadget might get all the attention. Also, if little Joey is going to spit up, a book may be easier to clean than a tablet computer.

“It’s intimacy, the intimacy of reading and touching the world. It’s the wonderment of her reaching for a page with me,” said Leslie Van Every, 41, a loyal Kindle user in San Francisco whose husband, Eric, reads on his iPhone. But for their 2 1/2-year-old daughter, Georgia, dead-tree books, stacked and strewn around the house, are the lone option.

“She reads only print books,” Ms. Van Every said, adding with a laugh that she works for a digital company, CBS Interactive. “Oh, the shame.”

Image: Parents reading to child, via Shutterstock.

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  1. by Karen

    On November 21, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    I agree. I do everything on my phone, but try to keep the electronics away from my 2 1/2 year old. I want her to grow up with traditional books and “old-fashioned” toys.

  2. by Josette at Halushki

    On November 21, 2011 at 1:18 pm

    I don’t think it’s a double standard. Electronic media isn’t something you can leave around the house for kids to pick up and interact with as they like. I mean, unless you have the bubble wrap version of an eReader.

  3. by K. Vulture aka J. Croston

    On November 24, 2011 at 6:21 am

    This is a fascinating discussion. As a “wired” parent, how long can you keep your kids “unwired?” Can a “wired” household have “unwired” values?

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