To Kindle, Or Not To Kindle The Small Child

by Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing] on November 7, 2011

in Being Mom,Kiddos

It’s too early to decorate for Santa’s birthday, but it’s not to early to start shopping for the short people in this house.

Considering we’re not so good at the whole “saving” thing, we have to start buying for that cheap bastard to get all of the credit in early November. It basically gives us up until January to pay our bills 2 months late in order to shower the small people with way too many presents that were supposed to have been dropped off by some strange Jolly Man who entered the house overnight through the dishwasher*.

*If you’re a house like ours in Florida without a chimney, Santa sneaks in through the dishwasher. 

We took a trip to our BRAND! NEW! TOYS R US! this weekend, and using our fancy iPhones, we created gift lists for the girls. Needless to say, they wanted everything to be scanned to their Gift List and a few things put in the basket to take home immediately.

See: Leaving a toy store without buying the kids at least one thing would be a death wish for the rest of your happy day. No amount of discipline or parenting skills will negate this fact. 

The tops wished-for items on my Claire’s Christmas List? Hello Kitty anything, makeup, jewelry-making kits, and Squinkies.

The quintessential girl’s girl, thanks to the DNA-influence of her two aunts.

The #1 wished-for items on my Anna’s Christmas List? Books.

I’m raising a 7-year-old nerd. 

Books are expensive, yo. They may only be $4-9 apiece, but when the kid reads no less than 8 books a week, it gets pricey. Don’t start to tell me about the fancy library with its fancy free books, because we here in the Lynchipoo house are lackadaisical at best when it comes to actually returning borrowed books.

See: The $54 late fee charge from July I just paid in October.

We’re considering giving the 7-year-old genius child in our house a Kindle for Christmas.

Are we crazy?

Anna may be the next Doogie Howser MD, but she’s still a 7-year-old kid with 7-year-old kid accountability standards. She loses things, she keeps random papers for posterity, she forgets to hand in late homework.

If she had a Kindle, would she lose it in less than a week? Can I trust her to take it to school so she can read there?

Why are we considering giving the girl-genius a Kindle? She can borrow library books on the Kindle FOR FREE that don’t have to actually be returned, thus saving us an estimated at least $54 in one month.

We’ll try it out with her when I get my first very own Kindle in two weeks.

I’m kind of nervous that she DOESN’T do well with it, because if she doesn’t we don’t have a back-up plan for what to do about all these future library fees.

Again, are we crazy? No really, I’m asking for serious.

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{ 28 comments… read them below or add one }

1 November 7, 2011 at 1:20 pm

Enjoy your Kindle. I’m a book junkie, and I didn’t think I’d enjoy not having physical books to hoard, but I would rip someone’s head off before I let them take my Kindle.

And after much debate, I got my daughter one for her 11th birthday. I had the same issues you are struggling with. So we set forth the rules:

1. No games on the Kindle. Books only.
2. Only parents put books on there.
3. The Kindle goes to school (because the school requires her to bring her assigned reading to school with her) or stays home. That is it.
4. You lose the Kindle, it is not replaced.

4 months later, so far, so good.
An Awesome post on´s blog … The Week In Review


2 Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing] November 7, 2011 at 3:25 pm

We’d definitely limit all buying and anything else on the reader. She’d have the wi-fi only, basic touch Kindle, so no games, no nothing other than the books.

I do like the rule of “you lose it, you lose it.” I should do that with all her other stuff, too. SORRY KID.


3 Tracie November 7, 2011 at 1:50 pm

I generally hate e-readers. But my eight year old reads like your seven year old…and the book-buying was starting to kill our budget. Not to mention the space issues that comes from living in a small place. Books piled on every surface.

We bought her a Nook for her birthday in August and it has been really good. I had a bit of a learning curve with it, but that certainly wasn’t her fault. We homeschool, so taking it back and forth from school isn’t an issue for us….but she has taken it plenty of other places without incident.
An Awesome post on Tracie´s blog … A Child Was Raped And No One Told The Police


4 Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing] November 7, 2011 at 3:23 pm

Her room is over-run with books and she’s always asking to go buy more. It’s crazypants up in here.


5 Adria November 7, 2011 at 2:35 pm

I say go for it. Question: What app were you using at Toys R Us?


6 Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing] November 7, 2011 at 3:22 pm

Amazon’s app has a scanning feature where you can scan the bar code and add it to your wish lists. There were are few things that weren’t on Amazon b/c they’re Toys R Us-only, but very few. Totally awesome way to “shop” with the kids.


7 Vicky November 7, 2011 at 3:08 pm

We are a Nook family, but I am in the same boat as you. I love my Nook, I had the 1st one and just recently got the color one. I am thinking about getting one (1st generation) for my son for Christmas. He is in 3rd grade and reads like crazy. I love that we can borrow all the Sunshine State books from the library and he can read them on my nook, but dammit, he hogs the thing. My only concern is the school situation. He too has to bring reading to school, and I am just worried that at Bonneville Elementary, some other kid would steal it.


8 Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing] November 7, 2011 at 3:21 pm

You know I worked at Bonneville for 2 years, yes? Or you don’t… Either way, I taught 5th grade for two years from 2004/05-2005/06.

Small world…


9 Vicky November 7, 2011 at 3:25 pm

Yes I did know that. We talked on Twitter (Miss Anarchy). Gabriel, my son, is in gifted too and reads above his grade level. If we had to buy books, it would bankrupt me! What do you think about it getting stolen at school or the other kids getting jealous. Bonneville is a Title 1 school this year and a lot of the kids don’t have much.


10 Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing] November 7, 2011 at 3:34 pm

OH RIGHT. Gah. Sorry.

I didn’t know Bonneville was a Title 1 this year. Craziness.


11 Nancy [Spinning My Plates] November 7, 2011 at 4:53 pm

My 7 YO saved for two and a half years to buy a referbed iPad. She’s done beautifully with it thus far. I bought her an Otter Box case and we have definite rules around the thing (most of which she developed herself), like:
-it doesn’t go to school or to friends’ houses
-she doesn’t have to let her little brother play on it, but it’s awfully nice if she does
-only dad, mom, or Steve can load new content
-if she goes on the Internet (though our home wifi), she needs to ask first.

So far, so good. Your 7YO sounds pretty darn responsible. I would tell her that you’ll pay for half of a Kindle and that she’s got to come up with the rest in cash. Once she does, you can spend the rest of your balance on books for it. I’ve found my kids take much better care of their stuff when they have to save and pay for it themselves.

$400 is a lot of dog poop (at a quarter a pile). Let me tell you.
An Awesome post on Nancy [Spinning My Plates]´s blog … Good Choices


12 Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing] November 7, 2011 at 6:26 pm

Holy. Crap. Your kid has some serious focus to raise $400. I can’t even do that, and I pick up a lot of dog poop. Maybe my mom will pay me to pick up my dog’s poop.


13 Nancy [Spinning My Plates] November 7, 2011 at 7:21 pm

Yep. She’s got more in her savings than I do. It’s scary.
An Awesome post on Nancy [Spinning My Plates]´s blog … Good Choices


14 Megan November 7, 2011 at 6:04 pm

I have a 9 year old that received her kindle for her 7th birthday. BEST GIFT EVER. She uses it every car trip, and before bed. They are fairly substancial and has lived through the past 2 years without a scratch. Battery life is great too. Highly recommended!


15 Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing] November 7, 2011 at 6:27 pm

You’re helping her case for the Kindle.


16 Kelley @ magnetoboldtoo November 7, 2011 at 6:24 pm

do it.

The end.
An Awesome post on Kelley @ magnetoboldtoo´s blog … The REAL cost of smoking.


17 Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing] November 7, 2011 at 6:27 pm

What’s your motivation here, Kelley?


18 Fanny Roy November 7, 2011 at 7:03 pm

At that price you can afford getting her a new one every few months! She reads more, you have less clutter, no library fees. Everybody wins!

For the record? I’d totally buy it!


19 Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing] November 8, 2011 at 10:01 am

I like the no fees and less clutter deal.


20 Issa November 7, 2011 at 7:06 pm

I have one that my girls both steal. It’s filled with kid books. I’ve bought on of the new ones (the Kindle Touch) for my daughter for her tenth birthday in a month. I will eventually buy my seven year old one as well. Just maybe not till her birthday next summer.

I’d do it. They’re made well. They hold up to being dropped just fine. They hold a zillion books or something.
An Awesome post on Issa´s blog … Today I did something that scares me


21 Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing] November 8, 2011 at 10:01 am

I think it needs an Otterbox.


22 Michelle November 7, 2011 at 7:58 pm

I’m in the yes column as well.

1] Your library fees are almost the cost of a Kindle.
2] You’re teaching her to be responsible for it and make sure it doesn’t get damaged.
3] Lots of free books to both borrow and own, thereby cutting down on books that need to be purchased.
4] Whenever she needs a new book, you can get one for her in minutes without having to leave the house or even get dressed.
5] The more she reads, the more she learns.
An Awesome post on Michelle´s blog … My Articles/Posts for October 2011


23 Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing] November 8, 2011 at 10:07 am

Yes yes and yes.


24 Yo Mama November 8, 2011 at 1:25 am

Go for it. I was going to ask if I could get her one… 😉


25 Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing] November 8, 2011 at 10:00 am



26 Martin November 8, 2011 at 1:46 am

Only a yank teacher would question giving a child a book…

Get it.


27 Angie [A Whole Lot of Nothing] November 8, 2011 at 9:59 am

You’re the biggest nard on the planet for thinking an electronic reading device is a book.


28 Teri November 10, 2011 at 1:41 am

I know I’m late to the party but we just got our daughter the basic Kindle not too long ago because she was going through books like crazy. Also she reads a lot of the same stuff that I do (I like young adult lit, for reals) and I was tired of having sticky little fingerprints all over my fancy Kindle AND under the same account you can send books to multiple devices (there’s a limit but I don’t know what it is) so no need to repurchase. That was the most poorly constructed sentence I’ve ever written.

Her teacher lets them use ereaders in the classroom — I don’t think she cares how they read as long as they are reading – which is the most important part!

DO IT. 🙂
An Awesome post on Teri´s blog … Wednesday Wit


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