Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Technology for Children

On the news the other night they announced that technology items are the toys of choice for children this Christmas. They showed a 3 year old with his own Ipod and I was so surprised that he was able to use this. In fact, the mother said he knows more about it than the parents. These young children do not want the fake or childish technology instead wanting what their parents have. So, is this a good or bad thing? They also mentioned that children don’t use their imagination anymore and the mother said she wasn’t sure if this was good or if she should make him play in his bedroom with his stuffed animals. I have heard others say that all of this causes children to “get” attention deficit disorder. Others say that children lack social skills from too much technology. Another news clip I saw said that obesity is caused by this because children do not get enough exercise and play on videogames. I just talked to a man who said he bought his 4 year old his own laptop because the child wanted to use dad’s computer too much.

I think like in all things, we need to shoot for moderation. Some children could lack exercise if they sit and read a book all of the time so it isn’t just technology. Just like some parents limit exposure to TV, as parents we need to help our children have the opportunity to do things that will help them grow up to be healthy people. I feel that technology is extremely important to children because that is the way the world works. It is like learning a language when they are children, which is much easier than when they become adults. Learning to use computers when it is fun and new and exciting is much better than when they are in high school and have to take computer tech classes as a requirement for graduation. I also think we need to encourage them to get away from the computers to play with other children and to get outside and enjoy nature. I can say this from experience because I am a computer junkie. If I could, I would stay on my lap top 24 hours a day. I usually make myself do household chores before I get on the computer or time slips away from me. I also go hiking at least once a week. I do not let my computer rule my life but I have seen where it could do this.

What do you think? Is technology good for children? If so, at what age do you get them for children?

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