40% Of Parents Believe Their Children Feel Stressed On A Regular Basis
The rise of the increasingly digital world we are living in is negatively impacting our children’s mental health and creativity levels, according to new research revealed today.
Leading bookseller, The Book People, surveyed over 2,000 adults and children across the country and discovered that a surprising 40% of parents think their children often feel stressed, down to hectic schedules and day to day activities. To combat this, 6 in 10 parents (63%) say they dedicate time without fail, every evening to read bedtime stories to their children to ensure they feel happier and less stressed, as it’s revealed that almost three quarters (67%) of children feel that reading books makes them happy and relaxed.Inviting kids to channel their feelings and creativity, The Book People are offering children a once in a lifetime opportunity to become a published author by turning their thoughts into their own story, thanks to its annual Bedtime Story competition, which is now live.
9 in 10 parents (88%) state they use physical books to read to their children over electronic devices such as tablets and kindles. However, Britain’s bedtime habits have changed drastically over the years as tech has infiltrated our everyday and, shockingly, a tenth (9%) of men rely on Alexa, or equivalents, to read bedtime stories to their children. Women are far more likely to read their children a bedtime story with a physical book, as 91% say this is their preferred way of sending their kids to sleep.
In fact, research has shown that more kids value switching off from a screen heavy world and find enjoyment through their creativity as it’s revealed 9 in 10 (90%) children are happiest when reading and writing, rather than watching their favourite cartoon or playing the latest computer games. Furthermore, four-fifths (80%) of children say writing their own stories and letting their imagination run wild is their favourite thing to do in their free time.
It was also discovered that three quarters (74%) of children believe expressing themselves through writing and creating stories helps them to understand their feelings more, which is so important in a time when so many parents (40%) think their children regularly feel stressed. Julia Donaldson’s The Gruffalowas voted as the most popular book amongst children to draw inspiration from to write their own stories, and encouraged many young people all over the UK to explore their own creative expression through writing. Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, The BFG and Matildaalso came in as favourites with kids, as well as J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potterbooks.
It has been revealed that over half (60%) of parents use books as a mechanism to get through to their children, using reading as a means of sparking conversations to find out how they are feeling. Furthermore, half (54%) of parents believe reading to their children actually brings them closer together and aids in nurturing their relationship, finding this a vital part of their bedtime routine and bonding time.
Child and Family Psychologist, Dr Richard Woolfson, analysed the results and commented: “Story-telling – whether read by a child, told by a parent, or even created by a young writer – gives children an opportunity to reflect on their own feelings, to discuss topics with their parents that they might otherwise find awkward to introduce into conversation, and to express difficult emotions in safe, non-threatening context.
“It is so encouraging that the results of The Book People Reading Survey showed over 90% parents recognise that listening to stories and reading books help their child feel happier and less stressed.
“With hectic day and evening schedules, there is the constant irresistible lure of the tablet which pulls family members into their isolated technological bubbles. All it takes is a few minutes set aside every day to read a short story to, or with, your child, a quick chat about what they liked about the story, and what they felt when listening to it. That small effort will help boost your child’s sense of well-being, bring you closer together, and add another warm and nurturing experience to family life.”
The Book People are giving the opportunity of a lifetime to a young writer who aspires to be a published author with its Bedtime Story competition, and in partnership with Save the Children, at least 35% of the profits from the sale of the winning book will be donated to the charity. Since the competition started over £20,000 has been raised by previous winners through The Book People and Save the Children’s partnership. Young creative writers all over the UK are invited to let their imagination run wild and put their thoughts to paper, as they could be in with the chance of having their story brought to life in their very own book, illustrated by the incredible Lucy Fleming and published by Little Tiger. The winner, chosen by head judge and author Giovanna Fletcher, will also win an amazing £250 of books from The Book People for them, as well as £250 of books for their school. The theme of this year’s competition is ‘feelings’ and closes on 8th November 2019. Aspiring young writers can enter the competition at www.thebookpeople.co.uk/bedtimestory.