Let’s admit it;
we all grab our phones as it beeps even when we are with kids. Whether it’s a
social media post or a quick text, it’s difficult to ignore the curiosity.
But when you realize that your child has
started throwing tantrums to have more screen time, you feel guilty. On the
contrary technology and gadgets are also essential for a child’s development.
Parents often find themselves in a dilemma whether to give a green light or
hold back. To help parents decide on how young is too young for electronic
devices and what are the safest ways to introduce them, following essential
guide is the answer to all your W’s and H’s-
Pros of smartphones, tablets and laptops
Having access to technology at a young age
not only develops but also improves your child’s learning abilities when used
appropriately. Some of the benefits are:
applications help your children to develop hand-eye coordination.
• Reading eBooks
and online stories improves language skills and vocabulary development.
• Assists your
child to gain necessary skills for school readiness and enhances cognitive
applications aid in boosting visual attention of kids.
• Helps to
develop social interaction skills.
• Motivates to
finish assigned tasks on time.
dynamic spatial skills by using interactive applications.
problem solving skills
horizons by creative virtual environment through various multi-media
media develops talent and social skills.
• Builds up
computer literacy and improves manual dexterity.
Cons of active smartphones, tablets and
like stacking blocks so they don’t tumble down or mixing water with dirt to
make mud can never be beaten by pushing keys or manipulating mouse. Some of the
development due to restricted body movement.
from the real world and people interactions.
• Slows down the
sensory and motor development.
obesity and other health problems
• Unplugs from
reality because of too much stimulation.
• Affects their
studies and school achievements.
unhealthy lifestyle and poor eating habits.
Though it is
impossible to completely eliminate the exposure of electronic devices such as
smartphones, tablets and laptops but some endeavor can surely bring fruitful
Tips to slowly unplug :
No TV in the bedroom
One of the best
ways to cut down on screen time is to remove the TV from your bedrooms.
Watching TV at bedtime destroys sleeping pattern and creates other behavioral
Mealtime - electronic-free zone
Nothing can be more satisfying than having a meal with family. But when
electronic devices start intervening in your happiness, it’s better to boycott
them. Have a conversation with your child about his day at school rather than
reading posts about other people.
Set screen limit time
It is must to
minimize the media exposure as much as possible. In the world of technology, we
all have forgotten the simple joys of old fashioned fun. So it’s better to
introduce some creative ways to turn off the electronic gadgets and tune in to
Bust the boredom
You might be too
familiar with the phrase "I am bored” but what to do when you hear it too
often? There are plenty of great ideas to engage the senses and to keep your
child involved in non-electric things. If you use electronics, use them
together in an interactive way.
Convincing a kid
to have an apple over dessert by saying former is as sweet as later is
difficult. Similarly, it is hard to argue or negotiate with your little one
asking for more screen time. If you are also worried when is the right time to
introduce your kid to one or all the technologies, here are some of the
wonderful tips to help you out:
Wait till preschool
Even if kids get
all excited to see laptops, phones and tablets and love to click buttons or
watch videos, does not mean they know how to handle a particular device. Many
studies suggest waiting till your kid is ready for the preschool. Kids under
two years of age develop social skills and conversational skills when they
interact with the real people. They understand the world by exploring each and
everything. Physical play is also crucial
to toddler’s growth. Each minute using smartphones, tablets and laptops is a
minute when your child is not getting an environment to flourish and integrate
new and developing skills. Can you recall when is the last time you played
peek-a-boo with your little one? It may be a fun child’s game for you but it
helps in developing brains of very young children. Incorporating plenty of
physical activities into your child’s routine is imperative for his overall
experts suggest kids above three years of age can actively participate and can
be benefitted in many terms with educational content. Various educational and
games applications polish eye-hand coordination of children. The educational
content may encompass attractive images, catchy voices, revising an idea and
other conversational subject matters.
Five to six
years is the perfect age when kids are capable of grasping things effectively
but need supervision to get engaged in learning activities.
recommend providing smartphones / tablets to kids in unsupervised environment
between the age of 11 and 13.
Parental supervision required
It is must for
parents to keep an eye on what media food their kids are eating. The main
objective is to provide balanced exposure. It is imperative to monitor kid’s
media exposure so electronic devices like smartphones, tablets and laptop
should be removed from the bedroom. Kids can get more benefit from smartphones,
tablets and laptops if your experience is also added. Take out time in
exploring a new app, discussing various features and benefits and asking
questions about the game. When you apply this practice, you also develop a
great bond while learning new things together. However medical practitioners
believe that at a tender age activities such as book reading or solving puzzles
or riddles is more powerful than any kind of media exposure.
Children have a
tendency to imitate elders. There is no good instructing your child to turf off
the television while you are busy in checking social media updates. Promote
watching quality content by applying first to yourself and let your child
follow you. Parents need to create a balance and make every effort to have fun
time with their children whenever possible. Be a great example to your kids and
try to create an environment which will assist your child in enhancing
language, social and cognitive skills. For example: Visiting a zoo with a kid and letting him
click photos of animals with your smartphones and tablets then reading online
about those creatures.
Just like you
monitor the food your kids eat likewise it is crucial to expose quality media
to your children. Parents have to extra mile about the media exposure their
kids are getting and help them understand better. When you make age-appropriate
media choices, It becomes utmost important to concentrate on content and
message. To decide better, age limit should be considered as mentioned in the
app. Smartphones, tablets and laptops can be true guides if used in a careful
manner. Parents should be able to make difference between types of content.
Search for the apps that teach time, money, basic math, geography, science and
other disciplines in an interesting manner. Many useful tools are also
available that train your kids in music and art in the most impressive way
interesting activities such as memory games, riddles, puzzles, enhancing
nurturing skills and many other creative forums are also wonderful options in
order to brush up their knowledge and sharp their minds. Pointing out and
labelling things is also one of the effective ways to enhance their learning.
Set limits for screen timit
This tried and
tested rule will give you an authority to mold your child towards other
interactive activities rather than being glued to Smartphones, tablets and
laptops. You have to set the example. If they see your love for reading, they
will likely develop an interest in reading.
· Set the
rule and be strict about it.
reasons why you have taken the decision.
successful parenting requires you to know your child’s life in and out.
their needs and remove all their inhibitions.
an environment where creativity prevails.
them to explore the real world with fun-filled activities.
time with your kids and tell them that you truly enjoy their company.
New dimension of learning
tablets and laptops gift an additional learning layer to the school-age
children. These gadgets not only allow to access content but also let children
gain expertise in a particular area. They can also get in touch with experts
who help them excelling in true senses. Technology is a true blessing if used
appropriately. So encourage your child to stay safe.
Whether you want
to embrace or escape the high-tech world, you can always assist your child to
make wise choices!