Researchers found that while the multimedia features of enhanced e-books grabbed children’s attention, those same features also distracted young readers and led more to “non-content related interactions.” Features like animation, sound effects, videos, and games made it more difficult for some parents to keep kids focused on reading and diminished kids’ recall of the text. Parents continually had to tell kids not to turn the page or not to touch the tablets, according to Chiong.
My 6 year old is really getting into reading physical books. She is great at sounding out words and making sense of the text. Yesterday, I watched her read a story on the computer that allowed her to click the word to hear it. She spent less time trying to sound the word out, and was quick to click. When I prompted her to give herself a chance to sound it out, she did and most often managed to read it without clicking.
Still, it was an illustration of a difference between literary media.