Augmented reality is a phrase that you may often hear and think little of. As a parent or educator, it is important to learn about its potential and understand how it works. The concept of augmented reality reading is just one of many applications of this technology designed for children’s education. This can be an excellent tool to further your child’s development.
What is Augmented Reality Reading?
Augmented Reality (AR) is when the physical world is combined with the virtual world using superimposed, computer-generated images and elements. AR technology has various applications and it is finding its way into children’s story books.
So, how does augmented reality reading work?
Let’s take the educational setting as an example. Teachers often employ physical objects to convey the meaning behind the concept that is being taught. This is called a visual aid. The use of imagery and physical objects is a dynamic way to present information in children’s stories.
When using augmented reality in story books, realistic digital overlays boost the interactivity of reading and learning. These act as a replacement for the physical objects once needed to convey information. The new developments in the field of mobile AR have allowed tremendous growth in the children’s story market due to the potential it holds as an educational tool.
There are several research studies (including this one by semantics scholar Lih-Juan ChanLin) that support the positive outcomes of the use of AR reading technologies, , so the development and usage of AR story apps is highly encouraged in the educational setting. AR is also a great way to combat the ongoing parental struggle to monitor children’s screen time and turn it into a positive. By utilizing apps that employ AR technology for children’s bedtime stories, exposure to mobile devices such as tablets and mobile phones becomes a way to promote children’s reading and improve learning abilities.
Benefits of Augmented Reality Reading for Kids
There was a time when the concept of augmented reality books and storytelling apps for children were considered a gimmick. Nowadays, the benefits and applications of AR technology are so widespread that more people are seeing how it can be utilized to create a positive impact in a child’s development.
In recent years, the number of grade school children reading on their own time has grown considerably. Technologies such as augmented reality have been critical in making this happen. In fact, these advancements help to reach the younger generation and promote positive reading habits, even while interacting with smart devices.
If you have yet to try augmented reality storytelling books for your children, there are a few things that you need to know.
AR Makes Books an Interactive Experience for Children
The use of augmented reality transforms a story into an experience for children. From being a passive reader (as is the case with traditional story books for children), they become an active participant in the story with the use of AR. The characters are placed in a realistic 3D environment that the reader (the child) can navigate in the same way that the characters of the story do.
This process transforms the story into something “real” rather than a fictional world that they are reading about. This is a very important element in learning through reading story books, especially when there is a moral lesson involved. The best way for children to learn that lesson is to place themselves in the shoes of the characters to experience what they go through.
When kids immerse themselves into the same world as the character, they can more deeply relate to them and further connect to the morals involved. The lessons learned are then translated into the child’s everyday life.
AR Allows Family Connection
This is another aspect of augmented reality reading that brings about a host of benefits to the child, specifically when their family is reading the book to them. Seeing their family members within the story, taking on the role of the characters and interacting with the environment, promotes not only a greater interest in the story, but a deeper family bond. Kids view their family as role models, and seeing them play the characters they love can form stronger connections.
AR Makes Reading Fun and Engaging
This is one of the top benefits enjoyed with augmented reality reading. In this digital age, when most kids would rather spend time on their mobile phones than read a story book, the implementation of AR technology makes books attractive in the eyes of children again.
The addition of AR elements makes the stories more in-depth, rich, and engaging. There is no sense in talking about how AR can promote creativity, enrich brain development, and foster learning if you can’t get your child to enjoy the act of reading. AR story books and apps can address this initial hurdle so that children develop an interest in reading and all the other benefits will simply follow.
As the world moves forward with technology, it is important to evolve with it and adopt new ways of learning and reading. The storytelling and augmented reality reading apps available are designed to provide meaningful content for all ages. Take advantage of this technology and your children will fall in love with reading story books!