A few days ago, I was in one of those gadget stores in a mall and I saw a kid, about three or four years old if I’m not mistaken, pull her mom to the displays and say, ” Mama, buy ipod touch“. A few minutes later, she walked out of the store with her very own “toy”.
Hmmm…some parents would frown upon such a behavior, but for me (okay, I may not be a mom, but… :)) I think it CAN be a good thing. Granted it isn’t ALWAYS a good thing, I think it has limitless potentials. When my fellow teacher friends and I were discussing it, we talked about how different it is not to educate young kids. We now have so many modern ways of teaching the basic academic competencies, many of which were unavailable when we were starting out.
As I have said many times over in this blog alone, modern technology continues to evolve and new gadgets will continue to be invented. We can’t fight that, and so the best thing we can do is not just over-gadget our kids, but to make sure we find the potential of each of these gadgets to do good for our kids. Maybe I think that way because in a way, my mom indulged me with gadgets as well, but to be honest, it was through those gadgets that I learned many, many things.
Some guidelines, I think, that can be helpful are the following:
- set a “gadget schedule” which allows you to monitor the amount of time spent on such activities
- enroll your kids in more “active” activities, such as sports and the like so they have alternative activities too.
- utilize the gadgets as educational tools by downloading educational apps and ebooks
- monitor, monitor, monitor their activities on the gadgets