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JLeslie's avatar

Do you prefer a paper book to an ebook for young children?

Asked by JLeslie (65197points) May 24th, 2021

What is your opinion? Why?

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18 Answers

Mimishu1995's avatar

I would prefer paper book. A kid needs to familiarize themselves with the concept of “book” first before they can move on to the more abstract ebook. And besides, ebook can be harmful for the child’s eyes and too distracting with all the ads and pop-ups.

janbb's avatar

Definitely a real book. They will be looking at screens all their lives and there is something more tangible and sensual about a real book and turning pages. Although, @Mimishu1995 , I’ve never seen an e-book with ads or pop-ups embedded.

In addition, it is easier to sit with a child on your lap and a “real” book than an e-book.

Mimishu1995's avatar

@janbb actually it’s not the ebook’s fault, but the apps that run it. An actual device for reading ebook is very expensive in my country so most people would use their phones or tablet to read ebook instead. And because phones or tablets aren’t made specifically for reading ebook, people have to download apps, and this is where the ads and pop-ups come in. Most people here don’t have enough tech knowledge to choose a good app either.

The class I attend to allows students to use their phones for dictionary. And I’m too familiar with the sudden “buy our stuff” music that often appears out of nowhere.

janbb's avatar

@Mimishu1995 I understand. When I read e-books, it’s usually from the library and I read them on my iPad. Different interfaces would be different.

Zaku's avatar

Yes. I’d want children to experience a physical book, not relate to a screen.

nikipedia's avatar

I like both. Physical books are great for the reasons described, be we have a small apartment; I’m out of places to put them and they’re stuffed into every corner. Between my two kids we go through hundreds of books each year, so digital books keep the clutter down. I especially like the Epic reading app and we’ve found some real gems on there.

janbb's avatar

@nikipedia Do you go to the library for children’s books as well?

nikipedia's avatar

@janbb I am a little embarrassed to say that we don’t. I was always bad at returning physical books on time, it became one of those errands that would hang over my head. And the e-book app they used was cumbersome, and selections were very limited. And then libraries closed for a long time anyway!

The library aspect is one of the reasons I like the Epic app so much—it is like having a kids’ library but the interface is really nice and there are a bunch of extra features, like quizzes and animations.

janbb's avatar

@nikipedia That is true of my SIL’s family too. I just think the experience of going to the library with kids and picking out books is such a rich one to have. It makes me sad that many young families don’t do it.

Demosthenes's avatar

It’s good for kids to get a break from screens and experience the tactile sensation of page turning and the size of illustrations in a real book. As a kid I loved getting lost in picture books (especially the images in those “I Spy” books). Simply can’t replicate that on a screen.

stanleybmanly's avatar

I do for myself. And of course I pass the habit on. I booked the grandsons incessantly. The eldest is in his second year at Cornell. I’m so proud of him I could pop.

flutherother's avatar

I prefer a paper book for young children as they can then properly appreciate the illustrations and the excitement of turning the page. It is also nice if their favourite books have a physical presence in the nursery alongside their bed, soft toys and little personal things.

smudges's avatar

Definitely, physical books! I have a 3 year old nephew who LOVES books, so much so that he will carry his current favorite around for a few days, put it in his bicycle basket or a box or some other container, only to take it back out. It’s a nightly routine to read a book to him (his choice) in the rocking chair in his bedroom. I remember being read to in bed, also – good memories! He turns the pages, and there are many books with tactile features such as fur on a picture of an animal. I think all children should have physical books at least until first grade.

Mimishu1995's avatar

A bit unrelated and purely for fun, this is one of the “buy our stuff” music that I was talking about :P Imagine walking in a quiet class supervising your students while they are totally concentrating on their work and then hearing this song, with maximum volume.

SnipSnip's avatar

Of course. I would not read a book on a computer screen, and neither would my children. I love books, and love to buy them. They are the same.

JLeslie's avatar

I really hope books don’t disappear. As an adult I almost never read any books, but as a young child I loved being read to by my mom or grandmother and going to the library.

I was lucky that we had a really nice library where I lives when I was young and we could walk to it from out apartment. It was on the Hudson River, a really beautiful setting. My mom would take me there for story time and a bunch of us kids would sit in a semi circle while one of the librarians or volunteers would read to us. I just googled out of curiosity and the library still has story time and I just read the history page,. It was founded by The Women’s Club in Hastings.

@smudges Thank you for telling us about your nephew! Made me smile. I had forgotten about the book Pat the Bunny until you mentioned that some books have tactile features. I loved that book when I was little.

Patty_Melt's avatar

Paper, absolutely.
When I learned most of the kids in my daughter’s second grade class had no books at home, and three was the most, one kid having that many, I went home and sorted through her library of well over one hundred. She was over two years ahead with her reading, so she had plenty she didn’t read anymore.
I took the stack in the next day, and let each kid choose one, then another, until the stack was gone. Owning a book they could hold, and could call theirs had every face in the room beaming, except a girl who thought I mistreated her, giving away some books.
It means more, turning the pages, scrutinizing any pictures.
If they have ownership, putting their name in it, and having it to keep is like treasure claimed.

Definitely paper.

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