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Education Lab Blog

Education Lab is a yearlong project to spark meaningful conversations about education solutions in the Pacific Northwest.

Topic: reading

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December 19, 2013 at 12:58 PM

Poll: Are tablets replacing books in your household?

Yesterday on the blog, we weighed the pros and cons of using technology as a learning tool for toddlers:

Not much is known about how such media experiences affect infant brains, according to Kathy Hirsh-Pasek, director of the Infant and Child Lab at Temple University, who spoke on a recent online panel sponsored by Child Trends, a nonprofit research group.

What they do know: Done well, digital experiences can enhance children’s knowledge and skills. Done poorly, they can hurt.

Also on Wednesday, The Atlantic published an article about children reading on electronic devices. The headline: “Tablets make it nearly impossible for kids to get lost in a story.”

The post went on to cite a study from the UK that found more children are now reading on screens than reading physical books. Learning-based apps, the author argued, are focused on interactivity, making it difficult for children to easily follow long narratives and “fall in love with reading.”

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0 Comments | More in Poll | Topics: reading, technology

December 4, 2013 at 9:31 AM

Guest: How a summer club got Seattle kids and parents reading together

reading thermometer dayna provitt

A reading thermometer the Summer Reading Club created to track student progress (Photo by Dayna Provitt)

Something magical happens when a child reads out loud, to an adult or around his or her peers. There’s a sparkle, a pride, a joy. Many parents haven’t experienced this, and we all absolutely need to.

This is the thought that kept me up late one night in May last year. I was thinking about some of the children in my first-grader’s class, the emerging readers whom I worked with weekly.

Could I impact their reading this summer, even though I don’t have a connection with their parents? Many work full time and can’t go to school functions. How can I share this experience with them? I had seen their kids grow so much this year. Many now read with confidence, and I was rewarded with lovely, toothy (and toothless) grins. Yet summer was coming, and their days may not include such joyful reading and proud smiles. Could I change that?

Thus the Summer Reading Club was born.

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0 Comments | More in Guest opinion | Topics: parent involvement, reading