Does Your Child Use an E-Reader?

Does Your Child Use an E-Reader?

Beth Callaghan
Nov 6, 2013
(Image credit: Judah Morford under CC BY 2.0)

We asked you all a few years ago whether you read to your kids from an e-reader. Now that my boys are in elementary school, I'm wondering about the corollary: do your kids read on an e-reader? As I see many of my 5th grader's friends carrying their Kindle Fires and their Nooks and their iPad minis to school, I wonder. When is the best time, if any, to start your kids out on an e-reader?

Many schools are starting to incorporate tablets and e-readers into the curriculum, so it seems only a matter of time before our kids use them at home. In fact, my sons' school gives every 5th and 6th grader an iPad to use at school, so they are all familiar with the technology. So far, though, at home my kids have only been reading old school paper books.

Admittedly, I've been a bibliophile who has converted to reading on the iPad. I love being able to carry my entire library around and being able to access new books any time. And I'm wary of the poetic arguments against e-readers that assert that there's something vitally important about touching pages and feeling a real book. These arguments seem to be rooted in a kind of nostalgia that doesn't really have any basis in research or science.

What are the drawbacks, then, of reading on an electronic device? My main complaint would be that there are many other distractions on these devices; you can often text or surf the web or play games instead of reading. Is there a way to lock an e-reader down so that only books can be accessed?

I see lots of reasons for adopting e-reading for our kids: it's space-saving, environmentally friendly, and cost saving (nearly every e-book I've purchased has cost less than its paper counterpart). So what are we waiting for?

Do your kids read on a e-reader? Does your child's school use them in the curriculum? Give us your opinion in the comments!

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