Kindle’s, iPad’s, iPhone’s, and our trusty friend the TV… we’re completely surrounded by technology these days. Those little gadgets can do anything from sending a message to ordering the food shop! I’m not ashamed to admit I’m dependent on my phone for contact with friends and family, social media and of course everything to do with running this blog.
A month or so ago I sorted the children’s tablets for them, as a single parent something to keep the kids amused is a godsend, I originally intended to only allow them to have an hour or so a day but that quickly went out of the window. The change in my children’s temperament since they’ve had their little escapes is phenomenal. Mia in particular enjoys doing sums and reading books on hers, she is hugely creative and creates the most lovely pictures using drawing apps. She’s not sat watching mindless TV shows on it all the time, although she does enjoy those too, but as long as she’s not hiding in her room at all times with it who am I to complain?
Argument’s over who get’s to watch ‘their’ programmes are now practically non-existent, no longer does one wind up the other whilst they are trying to do a puzzle or paint, and the withdrawal of said tablets has been a great bargaining tool when they misbehave.
Theo love’s to put on his headphones and zone out for a while, he too enjoys interactive learning games and his knowledge of color’s and animals has really come on. He has never been a singer or a dancer, but I downloaded a music app onto his and I’ve caught him sweetly singing along more than once. He’s come out of his shell a little, his confidence is growing.
Thank’s to those tablets, I have a little piece of sanity back, a little quiet when I’m trying to do jobs around the house, and I love sitting with them and watching how fast they can work it all out and listening to them tell me what goes where.
Perhaps it’s time we accepted that technology is now a fundamental part of learning, of course, there is nothing like putting pen to paper, but I fully support any technique that contributes to a child’s development.
I don’t and won’t limit my child’s screen time as long as they are being stimulated, Mia is in school full-time and Theo goes to nursery four days a week, whilst at home we always make time for reading proper books and playing ‘real’ games. The balance is not uneven, in fact, it’s more even than ever!
Having tablet’s for the children has benefited us all, and I’d promote children from the age of around 3 years old having them to most other parents.
Kayleigh from Little B And Me has the same outlook, she says… ‘I don’t limit my sons screen time at all (he’s 2 and a half). I feel, as well as others, that he’s advanced for his age. I put it down to the repetition & fun of the games. Games he thinks he’s just having fun with when really he’s learning. He knows his abc’s & can count to 20. He also teaches people how to use iPad’s & the Wii. I absolutely love how he interacts with technology & how easy he finds it. Our lives our only going to get taken over by more technology as we go on so It’s imperative that he learns’.
Nyomi over at Nomipalony also agrees, she says ‘I don’t limit at all. My kids will naturally limit themselves if I give them free rein. I’m also not against it though, I think they can learn a lot from it and let’s be honest – media is the world they are growing up in now. These little tots who are using iPad’s as toddlers will be coding by the time they are 10 and that’s pretty amazing. Like all things I think it’s everything in moderation, if they are getting out the house each day and doing diverse tasks then I’ve no problem with the iPad or tv.’
There are concerns that children become addicted to technology, that we as parents are handing over the actual parenting to gadgets, but this will only happen if we allow it. I don’t use gadgets to parent my children, I am parenting them by giving them a learning device, no matter what advances in technology may come our way, my children will still be the ones that love jumping in puddles and playing on the swings.
Nothing has the ability to take over childhood if you don’t let it.