Family reading by gadgets
BEDTIME stories are experiencing a boom in popularity among UK families thanks to gadgets such as tablets and iPads according to new research.
The survey of 1,009 British parents carried out by gadgets and technology e-tailer, LaptopsDirect.co.uk, found that 69 per cent of UK families have used gadgets and technology for bedtime stories with their children.
When quizzed on which gadgets are used at bedtime, tablets and iPads were found to be the most popular devices used for story time – as many as 77 per cent of British parents use these for bedtime reading.
This was followed by e-readers such as Kindles (63 per cent) and smartphones (51 per cent).
According to the research, more than 1 in 10 (11 per cent) of British families will snuggle up to an audio book.
As many as 43 per cent of parents feel technology-based bedtime stories are more interactive for little ones.
And 38 per cent said they choose to use gadgets for bedtime stories because it is more convenient, while 1 in 4 (25 per cent) said their children are more engaged and interested when using gadgets for bedtime reading.
The data found that 22 per cent of parents said their children request for their bedtime story to be read using a digital device.
Mark Kelly, marketing manager at LaptopsDirect.co.uk, said: “It’s no surprise that bedtime stories are now going digital with more and more UK families, as there are now numerous devices and apps which can be used to engage with little ones at bedtime and to help illustrate much loved bedtime stories.
“It is important to remember to limit screen time for little ones throughout the day and consider using nighttime functions on devices to limit the amount of blue light children are exposed to before bed.
“Controlled screen time spent together can be a very powerful tool for interacting with children and can aid their learning.”
Manchester was found to be home to the most tech savvy families with 78 per cent using gadgets at bedtime, followed by Nottingham (75 per cent) and Leeds (74 per cent).
Of course, screen time is a worry for parents and not for profit UK agency Common Sense Media advise it is important to focus on the quality of kids’ media.
They state that if concerned about heavy media use, parents and carers should consider creating a schedule that works for your family.
This can include weekly screen-time limits, limits on the kinds of screens kids can use, and guidelines on the types of activities they can do or programs they can watch. And they advise make sure to get kids’ input so the plan teaches media literacy and self-regulation.