Wednesday, March 09, 2022

Andy Crouch: Why physical books are better than digital screens


Our family has been reading Andy Crouch’s The Tech-Wise Family (Baker, 2017) in family devotions. Just finished an interesting section where he talks about the advantages of reading a physical book rather than reading from a screen.

Citing Abigail Sellen’s The Myth of the Paperless Office, Crouch notes, “the physical act of reading a book with its bounded pages, helps strengthen the learning of the concepts inside. (If you are reading this book in physical form, you may well remember, hours or days from now, where on the page and how far into the book this very sentence was found—a physical memory of your senses from eyes and hands that will reinforce the ideas you absorbed at the same time. This experience will be missing if you read it on a digital screen, with no fixed location on a page, no weight of the two halves of the book in your hands, and the idea itself will be harder to remember)” (125-126).

He adds:

“Likewise, physically taking notes with a pen or pencil on paper—the act of forming physical letters by hand, with the twists and turns of the letter forms and the accumulating fatigue and need for rest—turns out to aid memorization and learning, even if we never consult the notes again” (126).

I think I’ll share this quote with my students.

And yeah, I get the irony of the fact that I’m posting this in digital form.


No comments: