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A story to cheer us all

Most children's stories have a happy ending, but how will the story of the battle between traditional reading and digital technology end?

Most young children are so used to technology it has led some to predict the end of the traditional bed-time story.

However, a new survey appears to show it is still popular, with the majority of parents saying they read to their children at night and believe it helps develop a special bond.

It is reassuring to hear this and a reminder of the special power of stories for children. Only last week, the writer AL Kennedy said she often read children's stories before she started a new novel. "Reading children's stories is a pure, direct incarnation of story so it's very inspiring," she said.

Admittedly, it can be hard for parents to engage their children's interest when they are so used to digital technology, but as experts such as Edinburgh University professor of education, Lydia Plowman, have said, technological interaction can never compete with the human variety.

Technology certainly makes life easier but it can never replace the joy of a good story, whether it has a happy ending or not.

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