At the American Library Association conference in Las Vegas last weekend, librarians from around the country showed how apps and digital media can encourage literacy–dispelling fears that digital media will destroy our love of reading.
Chip Donohue, the director of the Technology in Early Childhood Center at the Erikson Institute, reminded readers that technology presents a powerful opportunity to expand children’s reading experiences:
It’s not either/or. It’s books AND iPads. These are the tools of the culture, these are the tools of their world. Show parents how this can be used wisely. We are not talking about the end of books as we know it.
During a related “Whet Your APPetite: Rapid Reviews of Apps for Children” session, librarian and LittleeLit.com founder Cen Campbell demonstrated a number of apps that will inspire and enhance early literacy efforts.
1. Sandra Boynton Collection: Popular kids books turned into interactive apps and simple eBooks.
2. Endless Alphabet: “Kids will have a blast learning their ABC’s and building vocabulary with the adorable monsters in Endless Alphabet.”
3. Touch and Write: “developed by real classroom teachers, and recreates the fun and effective teaching strategy used in classrooms every day: learning letters by writing with shaving cream, jello, finger paint, and more!”
4. My Story: Book Maker for Kids: “Create and share ebooks and stories by adding drawings, photos, and stickers. Then record your voice on every page and share your story with friends, family and classmates.”
Jason Boog is the former editor of GalleyCat. On July 15, Simon & Schuster’s Touchstone imprint will publish his book, Born Reading: Bringing Up Bookworms in a Digital Age.