As parents, we’ve all battled with our children as they’re engrossed in a video game or movie on an iPad, tablet, or smartphone. We’ve had a better chance of catching Tom Cruise’s attention on the red carpet than our kids.
We all suffer (or live with) the challenge of prying your middle-schooler away from the screen long enough to eat a decent meal these days, with two-year-olds using iPads, elementary schoolers hooked on video games, and we all suffer (or live with) the challenge of prying your middle-schooler away from the computer long enough to eat a decent meal…
Technology is all around us, and its appeal to children is undeniable, but is it really assisting our children in their learning?
As technology becomes more interactive, adaptive, and personalized, it can become an excellent teaching tool. As a result, we must create boundaries as parents.
Today, software connects children to online learning groups, tracks their progress through lessons and games, and personalizes their learning experience.
Your child will most likely be well-versed in technology by the time they reach elementary school.
At school, students use technology to learn.
Schools are increasingly investing in technology. Here are three ways to ensure that technology is used successfully in your child’s classroom, whether they use an interactive Smartboard, laptops, or another computer.
From iPads to digital cameras, young children enjoy playing with technology. What should early childhood educators, as well as parents, consider before handing these devices to children?
Let’s start at the beginning: what does technology mean in the early years of life?
A camera, audio recorder, music player, TV, DVD player, or more recent technology like iPads, tablets, and smartphones used in child care centers, classrooms, or at home may be as easy as a camera, audio recorder, music player, TV, DVD player, or more recent technology like iPads, tablets, and smartphones used in child care centers, classrooms, or at home.
“I don’t do technology,” teachers have told me on many occasions. I inquire if they’ve ever taken a digital photograph of their pupils, listened to an album, tape, or DVD, or given children headphones to listen to a story.
Technology has often been used by teachers. The difference now is that teachers use extremely versatile devices such as iPads and iPhones in both their personal and professional lives.
Technology is merely a means to an end.
It should not be used in classrooms or child care centers because it is cool, but rather because it allows teachers to engage in activities that promote children’s healthy growth.
Teachers are using digital cameras, a less flashy technology than iPads, to involve children in learning in very innovative ways. That may be all they need.
Around the same time, as a matter of social justice, teachers must be able to incorporate technology into the classroom or child care center.
We can’t say that every child has access to technology.
A lack of exposure could deepen the digital divide – the disparity between those who have and those who do not have access to digital technology – and limit some children’s preparation for school and early success.
All children must be taught how to use technology, including how to open it, how it operates, and how to care for it, just as they must be taught how to treat a book in early literacy.
Experts are concerned that technology is harmful to children.
Children spending too much time in front of screens is a serious concern, particularly given the abundance of screens in children’s lives.
Today’s children sit in front of televisions, play on iPads and iPhones, and watch their parents take pictures with a digital camera that has its own screen.
There was once just the television screen.
For 30 years, that was the screen we thought about and studied.
We know a lot about how television affects children’s behavior and learning as a field, but we know very little about any of the modern digital devices.
The American Academy of Pediatrics advises against screen time for children under the age of two, although the NAEYC/Fred Rogers position statement differs slightly.
It states that technology and media should be restricted, but it is how they are used that matters most.
What is the substance of the document?
Is it being used for a specific purpose?
Is it suitable for children’s development?
As parents, we must be mindful of technology’s limitations and their effect on children’s eyesight, language, and physical growth. We must also consider our children’s overall growth.
Teachers and parents, my advice is to trust their intuition. If you think your child has been staring at the television for too long, switching it off.
It’s up to us, as parents, to note whether your child’s screen time is reducing or restricting experiences and playtime with other children, and to encourage them to try new things. Encourage them to engage in physical activity and play outdoors.
It’s also up to the parent to get a sense of the child’s personality and temperament, as well as determine whether or not technology is one of the ways the child likes to communicate with the world.
Cut yourself some slack at the same time.
We all agree that there are better ways to spend a child’s time than plopping them in front of the television, but we also know that child care services must prepare lunch and parents must take a shower.
In such cases, it is the adult’s responsibility to make technology time more meaningful and engaging for the child by asking questions and linking the virtual experience on the screen with real-life experiences in her environment.
Using Technology to Learn at Home
If you’re entertaining your child with your smartphone or your toddler prefers to play on an iPad or tablet, here are eight ways to make sure your child’s technology experiences are both educational and enjoyable.
Focus on Active Participation
Stop a program or turn off the advertisements if your child is engrossed in a screen and ask engaging questions. What was the character’s thought process? Why did the protagonist do that? What would you have done if you had found yourself in that situation?
Repetition is permitted. Repetition is an important component for young minds, which DVDs and YouTube videos include. Allow your young child to watch the same video several times and then ask him what he learned each time.
Tactileize it Unlike computers, where manipulating objects on the screen requires the use of a mouse, iPads, tablets, and smartphones allow children to control “physical” objects with their fingers.
Work on your problem-solving skills. While the jury is still out on this, a new genre of games can push your child to solve problems as they play, potentially improving focus and analytical skills in the process. There is no scientific evidence to back up the software makers’ marketing claims.
Boost Creativity Make use of technology for more than just entertainment. Record a story on your iPod or have your child sing a song into your video game device. Then, using the replay options, create an entirely new sound by slowing and speeding up their voice and adding various backgrounds and beats until they’ve created something truly original.
Demonstrate to Him How to Use It Many video games have levels, and young children do not understand how to progress or adjust levels. If your child is stuck on a level that has become too straightforward, ask if he knows how to progress and assist him if he needs a more challenging experience.
Why do you want to know? Ask your child why they are using an app or game in the “wrong” way, such as pressing the wrong button all the time. It’s possible they like hearing the game’s noise when they get the question wrong, or they’re confused and can’t find out which group of items corresponds to number four.
Keep your attention on the game. Technology should be explored and played with by young children. This should be called play rather than a drill session.
Inquire about your own log-in. Many school systems have a parent log-in that allows you to track your child’s progress. If not, inquire about the files that a teacher has access to. After that, check in on him every few weeks and see how he’s doing. It’s a fantastic way for you and your child to stay on track with their success.
Inquire about teacher training. Technology is often used in classrooms without the proper training. Inquire about how a whole-class device, such as Clickers or an Interactive Smartboard, is used in class and what training the instructor has received. “As a parent, you want to know if your children’s teachers are well-trained and using [new technologies] effectively.
Locate Parental Resources One of the most effective ways for technology to assist your child is to assist you in learning more about learning.
Computers, smartphones, and tablets aren’t going away anytime soon, but with a few tweaks and thought, you can make your child’s technology time efficient, educational, and enjoyable!
Let’s be frank about it. By the age of three, most children can use a mouse, open and close applications, and even search the internet.
It’s time to speak to your child about internet safety once they have the cognitive capacity.
Establish specific guidelines and internet safety rules for what types of media are appropriate, and carefully endorse and track your child’s use of technology.
Tell your child that she should never give out her name, address, or other personal information on the internet or via social media.
Make sure you have a high-quality web filter and protection system in place, and talk to your child about what to do if he comes across inappropriate content (close the screen and warn you).
Assist your child in realizing that technology is only one of many learning resources. Read books, play educational games, and perform studies. When your child asks a question, look up the answer on the internet.
Before you hit the power button, think about how you can make the most of your child’s technology time at home and at school.