Dustin ensures a seasonal hedgehog tale is no turkey
A friend recently reminded me of the fun that reading bedtime stories to our children can be. He said that while his two small children were now playing with computer games, he also reads them bedtime stories which they love.
His hope is that they will grow up with an appreciation of books as well as computerised fantasy games, something I am sure is shared by most caring parents.
Initially he felt playing with these games might be harmful but then realised his children will need those same skills to use mobile phones and computers, both at school and in everyday life.
These days we all need to be computer literate, something he and I had to struggle to come to terms with as technology evolved.
Watching television and manipulating images on a screen are not necessarily a bad thing but kids must read books also, otherwise there is nothing to properly challenge their minds and no incentive to increase their word power.
Computers can do so much but are only as good as the people sitting in front of them -- and nothing compares with letting our imaginations run free when prompted by a good story.
I came across a lovely first book for bedtime recently which reminded me immediately of my own childhood, a time when I was fascinated by tales of faeries, pixies and goblins and the adventures of Ratty and Mole in the wild wood. It is titled Harry the Hedgehog and was written by Dale Treadwell, an Australian environmentalist who was originally involved in bush land restoration and who has been living in Ireland for over a decade.