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English teacher interested in language and culture, and also in fiction using magic, myth, folklore and the supernatural. Now teaching part-time in a Leicester Upper School (ages 14-19) and also writing for children, teens and teachers.

Friday, 7 June 2013

Revisited Family Friday: Kindles and Kids

This post was originally published in November 2011, and I am pleased to say that it still holds true.

When I got a Kindle in the summer, our youngest was intrigued and shortly began announcing that a Kindle was what she wanted for her 8th birthday at the end of September. We were uncertain whether she would really use it and not miss paper books, but we let her test it out (by putting a copy of The Wombles on for her to read) and she remained firm in her plans. We both have the wi-fi only keyboard version which is no longer available (the new one came out just after her birthday).

I have to say that nearly two months on, it was definitely a good idea: she's used it every day. She asked for Amazon vouchers and cash from other people and put loads of Horrid Henry (Horrid Henry and the Zombie Vampire is a current favourite), Roald Dahl and various other things on there, which she's been working her way through. Since I attached her kindle to my account (and she keeps the wi-fi turned off), we can share books when I have suitable things for her (e.g. I put Lob and The Wombles on it for her straight away). We have even, on occasion, read together with her reading aloud to me and me following on my own screen - how cool are we? :-)

She has returned to some of her print books since getting the Kindle, but she is still reading on it, mostly in bed. It's also brilliant for bringing with us if we're going to be waiting anywhere, and for overnight visits she can have a choice of books. Our current shared bedtime Kindle read is Julia Donaldson's The Giants and the Joneses, which is very exciting, and she's looking forward to Francesca Simon's The Sleeping Army next. She's very excited about that one as the main character is named Freya like her, and she's hoping to learn about Norse myths, as she's always known that's where her name comes from but there aren't many younger kids books using them. [ETA: she LOVED The Sleeping Army, as did I - a great read!]

So, on the whole, I would recommend considering Kindles for younger kids. Obviously, we were concerned that it would just be a novelty thing, but it's a definite habit now and it's surprising how many books for this age group are being released on the Kindle. I don't have a worry (currently) about her merrily purchasing books on my account, so her device being linked to my account as well as mine is working for us, and I understand that it is pretty easy to change that later if need be. Also, of course I'm enjoying being able to read her books as well as my own - and if I choose to read Horrid Henry on the train, no-one will know!

2 comments:

  1. Oh how fabulous. I am so pleased this worked for your daughter. I am about to get one for myself as I have put it off for so long, but I do like the idea of having a choice of books at hand.

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  2. Ah, the beauty of being able to purchase some fantastic kids books, and say they're for your child, while being able to read them yourself :). I have grand plans for this re: my nephews and the cinema when they're a little older.

    I'm glad this worked out for your daughter. It does sound like a very good idea, and I can certainly see it's much more convenient when she's sleeping over somewhere.

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