If you want your child to foster a love of reading then part of that process is to show them how great a book can be.
Latest research indicates that the common thread in children 6 – 11 years who choose to read for pleasure are:
From a visual perspective, reading out loud to a child allows for a number of things to happen. Without the need to think about the mechanics of the eyes focusing and aiming at the words on the page and without the need to decode the words on the page, a child is free to flex and practice their visualisation skills.
This freedom from the other tasks needed when you read to yourself, allows for the creation of pictures from the words that are heard. Creating a movie or pictures from the words that a child hears is how comprehension develops. If a person can’t change words into pictures when reading a story then they are unlikely to remember what they have read and more complicated comprehension skills such as inference will be far more difficult.
Online time with any device usually doesn’t require a child to visualise at all. Images are usually being force feed to the visual system and the opportunity for visualisation and imagination is usually very limited.
Don’t stop reading to your children just because they are getting older and becoming more adept at reading. Let’s drop those devices and regularly pick up a book and read together!