Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Is technology really bad for kids?

When Christopher was a little tot, my mum gave me some strict warnings:

"No TV until he is much older...."
"Let them love their books first...."
"No PC. Why need to introduce them to PC?"
"Look at the handphone screen, spoil eyes...."
"Teach them to read first...."

So, I sort of gave in.

But as the months rolled by, I noticed alot of kids below 2 are into technological games these days. And they do learn quite a lot from these interactive softwares. Also alot of music and nursery ryhmes can be accessed free from the internet as well.

In fact by 2+, most kids already know how to use the mouse, the back key, replay and even choose the music sites that they want to see.

My colleague's son learns spelling through the Google Search too. Since he wants to see pictures of a certain object, he better learn to spell the word!

As of now, my son just slams on the keyboard whenever my laptop is open. But he has a great interest to sit with me when my laptop is on. Mainly coz he is amazed by action-reactions now. Not so much my reaction but the reaction from the laptop when he clicks on a certain thing.

The same with the remote control. When he presses a certain button and the screen changes colour, he can tell me which button he has pressed.

I remember someone saying, we have to keep up with the times. As in keeping with the times of toys the younger generation play. We cannot impose our kind of games on them.

You know you can imagine play tennis with the TV !

Which makes me wonder....
Is technology really so bad for a kid below 2?

Maybe it will teach him patience - as in how to use the laptop. And yet capture his attention since there will always be a reaction not dependent on mummy!

But I must say, he does flip through alot of his books now....considering he only has that to entertain him!

What do you think?


A gift from God said...

I read somewhere that TV and Computer which are passive entertainment for kids are not good but used appropriately it will be very beneficial.

I can tell you that Reese learns alot from watching cartoons (limited to certain shows and certain hours only) and computer interactive games for young children.

Make sure you have a balance. I make sure Reese spend enough time on other stuff like play, reading books and others.

little prince's mummy said...

I'm thinking as long as it's well-balanced, Not too much of TV and computer, Does no harm..

Cuddly Family said...

I think it's fine, so long as you control what they watch and how long they watch.

My boys love tech and TV, but love books too.. It all depends. If you are also a bookworm and love to read and also watch tv etc, they pick up from you.

I dont mind them handling the remote etc, but be forewarned to find it missing one day LOL

The prob that I've seen with Js classmate is that thats all they do. TV and games. They dont go for walks, go exploring, discover what's around them, even look out the window! If you balance all of those and the other stuff, you'd be set :)

right now he's prob more interested in music, sing songs and dancing :) Lil cutie.. :D

LittleLamb said...

ditto... philip is the same. loves playing with the tech items in the house..

Ponytail said...

Both of us are using laptop and watching TV...its hard to reason with Zoe why she cannot use it. Since both of us are in the IT line, Zoe started using mouse at barely 1 years old.
I have the same thot like u too and I think if moderately used, its okay and beneficial to the kid.
One of the reason I started Zoe in playschool so early, she is watching TV non-stop at the babysitter's place (except when she is sleeping). At school, TV is only once a week and less than 2 hours. At home, she watches sometimes, but I also make a bookshelf full of books at the same place, with baskets of toys and a little table and chairs. Nowadays, I see her flipping her books, identifying things she sees in the books and also loves to play her puzzles more than watching TV. I let the TV on as well, but she choose the books and puzzles.

4malmal said...

I think I am like your mum! ha!
I love the games we play when we were young. Simple and fun and lots of room for imagination :)
We hardly use the TV!

hissychick said...

I don't mind a bit of TV...there are so many fantastic kids programs and even ones that get them up and moving (a godsend when it's been raining for days on end!).

As for computers I am way more conservative, as there is plenty of time for that when they are older and the linear way in which we use the PC does not allow for unstructured imaginative play and out of bounds for miss E, with the exception of looking at photos or playacting at sending emails. At four A has probably spent no more than ten minutes max here and there on the computer. She'd rather go and play and I'm glad about that. As you know she's a very bright child even if her Mum hogs the internet access LOL

Angeline said...

in proportion is the key.

our kids are the Z-generation, they are born to be techno-gurus... its in their blood! So there is no hiding in their flare when they pick up an electronic/electrical gadget.

PC games train the reflex capability, motor skills, analysis and sharpness of the eye too. Talking about the latter, that's why I said proportion is the key...
not too much, there must always be a time duration for such 'trainings'. *wink*

mumsgather said...

Everything in moderation. :) I don't watch much tv myself so the kids don't either but we set aside time for them to watch tv. We place chairs and footstools for them to watch tv on Sat and Sun morning. Occassionally we watch a whole cartoon movie together on a Friday evening but thats about it. I think tv is too passive but I'm all for the pc though. There are lots of interactive educational sites which are free. The word here is INTERACTIVE. Thats where the learning comes in. So I think pc is better than tv.

andrewjune said...

i thk it's good to expose to them-at a moderate rate...

rachael loves watching barney, and from that programme, she learns to hug me!

as for the keyboard, rachael too loves to slam on it as well...havent really exposed her to the world of internet yet though...

and she definitely loves her books too!