Parents shun storytime for screen time, study shows

Parents shun storytime for screen time, study shows

Parents are spending four times the amount of time engaging with screens as they are reading to their children, research has revealed.

A survey by the reading charity BookTrust has shown that adults are spending more than 1.5 hours with computers, phones or other types of technology, as opposed to 25 minutes they spend reading with their children.

The poll of 2,000 parents of four to 11 year olds also revealed that half of parents confess to either frequently skipping pages when reading with children, finishing reading the story before the end or refusing to read a second story. Of those who admit to skipping pages, half (49%) did so because they were too tired.

High profile presenters such as Dermot O’Leary, Alex Jones, Mel Giedroyc are presenting a National Time to Read challenge, between 18th and 22nd September, to “free up” 10 minutes a day to share a story with a #TimetoRead social media presence.

O’Leary said: "Although it can be a struggle to find those magical moments, it is important that we all find the time to read with the children in our lives, helping them unlock the joys of reading.”

BookTrust is delivering over 700,000 copies of Nadia Shireen’s picture book The Bumblebear (Random House) to every reception age child in England as part of the campaign.

BookTrust c.e.o Diana Gerald said: “Our survey shows reveals 43% of children enjoy comics and magazines, proving that it’s not just books that get them turning pages, you really can read anything, anytime, anywhere.”

For more information, visit the BookTrust website.