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Parents Corner

Good and Bad of Kids using SmartPhones

Since most of us have a smartphone it has become increasingly common to see a mom or dad hand the phone over to their little ones to entertain them while they are trying to get something done. Even I too do the same thing. (In fact, last week my liitle one Mr.Muhammed Zaid, pissed on my samsung s duos and caused a short circuit, and the phone is completely gone. This lead me buy a new Asus Zen Fone. Imagine what would have happend if somthing like burning or bursting of battery took place... Thank God). I’ll be the first to admit it, even though it was against my better judgement. The debate over whether allowing your kids to use your smartphone is a heated one with some critics believing it does harm and supporters believing it has many positive effects. We are not going to take sides here as we believe that it is ultimately up to the parents to decide how much mobile exposure to give to their children. Instead, I am going to provide you the goods and bads of usage and leave it up to you! PROS There are phenomenal digital learning apps for little kids. There are literally thousands of educational apps on iTunes alone and that just keeps continuing to grow every day. There are educational Kids channels in YouTube like ChuChu TV, Super Simple Songs, TuTiTu, Infobells, CVS etc where the kids get to learn nursery rhymes, alphabet songs, numbers songs, shapes, things, activity songs and many more. Exposing your little ones to technology will make them more digitally savvy later in life. Because the device is mobile you are encourage anytime, anywhere learning. There is a mind-blowing amount of fantastic web-based content out there for a child to discover, like watching orca whales swim in the wild or reading about and looking at pictures of flowers native to their home state. Children can be exposed to a world of music and videos that they would never otherwise be exposed to. CONS It is too easy for kids to access inappropriate content. Every moment spent in front of a screen is a moment that your child isn’t exploring their world around them which is critical in development. When using a smartphone to calm a fussy child you are essentially teaching them that if they throw a big enough tantrum they will be rewarded with play time. Spending too much time on a device could cause younger children to become over stimulated. Constant smartphone usage can result in a child being able to tune out the world around them and create a “looking down” personality. No matter what side of the debate you are on we can all agree that the smartphone is an everyday tool that isn’t going away soon. In fact, over the next few years we will see mobile technology incorporated into our watches and our eye glasses, both of which will blow our kids’ minds. It’ll be up to us to monitor our children’s exposure and do the best that we can in raising them in our digital world.

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