All children want to be technically adept as they watch their parents and older siblings use their digital "gadgets" and my four year old granddaughter is no exception. Every time I go to dinner with her, she gets on my I-phone and, with Netflix, watches movies. She knows more about my I-phone than I do! This is the world they are growing up in.
Left: Reading to Zoe
But in early childhood reading, I and, according to surveys, 68 percent of parents and grandparents, still prefer print books to e-books on tablets for small children. There seems to be something lost in the "cuddle time" factor with an e-book and tablet no matter how easy and useful all of the digital effects of the tablet may be. There is also a temptation for busy parents and caretakers today to just leave the "digital storyteller" in the hands of the child while they get other things done.
There is room for both print books and digital books in a child's library but most researchers think that print books should be experienced first. Technology can never replace the personal reading and story telling time between an adult and a child with a traditional printed book. Studies have also shown that, even with the e-book, the child benefits more by reading it with an adult. They need to have that sense of importance and time sharing within an adult's life.
Whatever form your reading is with your child or grandchild please remember that "It Takes Two". Don't leave them on their own. Ask lots of questions, explain things and encourage your child to add to the story. Don't be in a rush; enjoy the "cuddle time". It helps to develop your special bond and their self confidence as they mature. You will enjoy it and probably learn something too. Children grow up all too fast; enjoy this special time that you now have.