Submitted: The Two Sides Team September 5, 2012
Reading with your child is a gift no matter what the format but printed books remain the best way to develop literacy, research suggests.
September 4 2012
by Niall Murray, Irish Examiner
With stories now accessible on a range of digital devices, Dr Shiel said US research found enhanced e-books elicited fewer reactions to content than print books, suggesting the enhanced e-book format was less effective than print or even unenhanced e-books at improving literacy.
“Children who read enhanced e-books recalled significantly fewer narrative details,” said Dr Shiel. “This finding suggests that features of the enhanced e-book may have affected childrens recall because attention is focused more on non-content issues than on story-related issues.”
He said the indication from the research is that print books are better for promoting shared reading that supports literacy development, while e-books and enhanced e-books in particular are more advantageous for engaging children and prompting physical interaction.
For parents planning to share books with young children, the recommendation is to use a combination of print, e-books, and enhanced e-books. But they should also take up shared reading activities, such as discussion of important story content, and of links between the story and the childs experiences.
Meanwhile, the Reading Association of Ireland has teamed up with childrens yoghurt brand Munch Bunch and Irish childrens author Sarah Webb to find aspiring writers for children. The RAIs story-writing competition is looking for original childrens stories of 600 to 800 words, to feature the brand character Munch the Cow.