Flemish children in university research would rather read than use the internet

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Flemish children who participated in a KU Leuven study prefer to read books than to use the internet or chat. KU Leuven interviewed more than 1000 Flemish children between 9 and 12 years old. About 93 percent of those children turned out to have a game console at home.

In the survey, 37.7 percent of children say they enjoy reading a book or comic in their spare time, while 32 percent of children enjoy using the internet. About 33 percent of children like to chat, while mobile phone calls and texting are an activity for a quarter of the children surveyed.

Still, reading physical books and comics is by no means the favorite activity of the surveyed children. For example, 47 percent like to listen to music and gaming is an activity for half of the Flemish children. Many children therefore have a game console: 93 percent have a game computer, whereby the researchers seem to make no distinction between consoles and handhelds. Almost all children have a computer at home: 98.6 percent.

The researchers made no attempt to take a representative sample, they say in the study. According to the researchers, the results therefore mainly serve as an ‘exploration of the target group’. A total of 1277 completed questionnaires were returned. The research was carried out on behalf of Stichting Lezen, an organization that promotes reading.

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