I love reading and I love to see my children engaging with a book.
Now here is a parental dilemma, my partner bought me a kindle for Christmas and I have started to read books on it, I have also used it for a few apps, email and catch up TV.
The interesting thing is I can sit reading a book and people are observant of that, especially my children. They see ‘dad’ on a tablet or electronic device, which is the very thing that my ex wife restricts the boys doing as it often imposes on family time.
It’s okay in the car, travelling or stopping the children getting board, but not when we are together. However, reading a book in family time or in the lounge whilst TV was on is acceptable. The question is, was if it’s on an electronic device?
I remember reading the novel ‘Artimis Foul’ to my eldest at bedtime, a game he played on his DS. He liked it due to the connection to the game and what’s great is that he couldn’t jump between applications; it was a nice way to engage in reading together. As my eldest gets older, I often feel that he will prefer playing games to reading on a Kindle.
What does he say when I read from a Kindle, and would the messages be different if it was a normal book and not an e-book? These are not things we might think about often, but they do affect our social interaction. I use to read in bed with a light, with a Kindle I can read without a light, but the effect on my partner is different. So the same is true of my children, ‘dad’ reading a book is more approachable than on the computer, which is how they may view the Kindle. Dads reading on Kindle looks the same if it were an email, web page or book; they are more likely to assume I am relaxed if it were a normal book.
The tactile name of a book is something I enjoy and something I want my children to enjoy. I want my children to have positive images of reading, I want them to see me as approachable during family time or chill time – does the Kindle help or hinder? I am not sure.
But I do know it is great for train work and travelling, and it doesn’t matter that much what they read a book on, as long as they read. However I do know they are not having their own until they are a little older and the library start to lend E-books, so perhaps not too much to worry about just yet ….
‘til next week.
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