In the same breath, I do not want to deny them of any of the technology that surrounds them. However, we will also want them to learn how to use their hands, like put together a simple piece of furniture, or fix their bicycle. As parents, we need to be the ones who strike the right balance for our children. How do you ensure the right balance of television, computer games and the Internet, with more traditional means of play and entertainment?It is inevitable that as they get older, they will be doing more of television watching, i Pad playing and smart phone usage. Now, toddlers can learn to count, learn to say the ABCs, learn to draw, learn their first words and recognize animal sounds, all on the i Pad.At the touch of a screen, you can download all kinds of applications for your child. They are growing up learning to use a smart phone before they can even talk.When my son was 17.5 months old, he could operate the television remote control, and activate my smart phone by swiping the lock key from left to right with his finger.Similarly, he knew how to use the i Pad’s touchscreen with his ever handy finger – swiping the screen, pressing on the relevant applications, even pressing the Home button to exit an application. We want them to learn how to navigate the digital world.We live in a world of i Pads, flat screen televisions, smart phones, GPS navigation systems, electric cars, the Internet.Our children are growing up in the fast-moving digital age.
That’s another world out there, and probably, another post in the future about how we manage that. When they are much older, we will eventually allow some time on a computer. Are you concerned about the amount of technology your children are involved in?I was convinced then that before long, he would be programming his own software. We played with water, using cups and other vessels to learn about volume. We played with doll houses, train sets, jigsaw puzzles, board games. We also want the boys to play with traditional toys.That may be an exaggeration, but truly, I worry that I’m allowing my children to be too involved in the digital world. We learned to open and close lids on boxes, to remove and replace objects in those boxes. We let them watch some television, but we also make sure they go outside and play on swings, slides, monkey bars, and get some fresh air.Children’s television programs are abundant, from educational to entertaining.
There is much dialogue about the extent of technology our children are immersed in, whether voluntarily, as permitted by their parents, or involuntarily, where they are surrounded by these things when they go to school, to a mall, or even, their friends’ homes.I believe that the key to this, to get the balance of these activities right, is that children should also immerse themselves with “old-fashioned” activities.