Mobile computing is great for educational and entertainment purposes. For children, a tablet is the new PC. With an internet connection, it is a powerful tool.
My kids have friends who keep in touch with them and are always talking about watching animated movies and doing assignments on their iPad. Yesterday, one of my son’s US-based friends offered to help him setup a Cartoon Network account and required his email account.
Of course, my kids have had their own email accounts created for them over a year ago, so that was no problem. However, they aren’t using them much right now. I have the impression that of they have access to a personalised device each, they will use technology more and get savvy faster.
Both my kids already know how to use Google for their home work. Either they use the home PC or highjack a tablet from mom or dad. I have heard them vocalist the desire to own theirs. They want greater liberty.
But then, the risks are there – the Wild Wild West that the internet is scares me as a parent. My son is only ten. His sister is eight. Of course, if given personal devices, some rules as to when to use them will have to be laid down, or else school work will also suffer.
I want those kids as comfortable and proficient in today’s world of technology as fast as possible. They will not grow up disadvantaged in this new world, if I can help it. Yet parenting is a delicate task with a lot of responsibilities involved.
Do you have kids? How early did you expose them to mobile technology, especially tablets and mobile internet? How are you handling the issues involved?