My four-year-old son is using gadgets since he was one and a half-year-old. That was when we got an iPad. He never use/used gadgets without supervision. We let him play game and watch videos on iPad.
It is so easy to use and to learn to use, that he figured out how to access the apps he likes all by himself. He even managed to open camera app and started taking photos.
Today is the world of gadgets. Technology is advancing so much. All these electronic gadgets swooped into our life not so long ago and there, they started taking over our lives. While growing up we didn’t have a computer at home. I got my first email id at a friend’s house, with her help. You know I was doing my engineering at that time. I think I was in 4th semester when I got my first ever email id. Soon we started doing projects and seminars all depending on this box which can do almost everything at our command.
Then came the smartphones and tablets. With them, life got a new companion. Every child knows how to use the smartphones or tabs at very young age. And I must say I don’t regret that my kid knows to use one. When we go to restaurants it is such a life savior because he gets bored soon and my phone shows him the cartoons and we are saved from the constant struggle to make him sit at a table.
At home, I can sneak in a little bit time to cook or to clean by making him do something on the iPad. There are a lot of different apps, useful ones, just for kids. And when he gets bored with one, there always is another one. The letter tracing apps are his favorite ones.
As much as I felt the gadgets as a blessing, I was worried if I am making my kid into a gadget addict. But I guess not, because he likes to play outside too. Even at home he likes to play with other toys which are not wireless or doesn’t have a voice on its own.
But that doesn’t make me a worry free parent in this digital world. Now, he is little. The troubles he could get into by using gadgets are comparatively less. Like he once made an app purchase all by himself. Touch the screen and that’s it. Done. The app is now loading. Then we activated the password protection for purchase. But again we made a mistake there – once an in-app purchase is made, additional in-app purchases can be made within 15 minutes without entering the password again. We learned that the hard way, when our kid unlocked an app without our knowledge. Settings are changed now. So no apps will find its way to our iPad with mine or my husband’s knowledge.
I am glad he doesn’t know about facebook and other social medias. I am familiarizing myself with the necessary steps and precautions to be taken when the inevitable comes. I would rather have him a facebook account with my permission and supervision than his friend helping him in getting one.
There are other apps helpful in monitoring your kids online activities now. Ekavach is one among them.
The online world is scary. And scarier is the thought that our kid could be a victim of online activities. They can be bullied, stalked or pretty much anything is possible. Since the technology is an inevitable part of our life it is up to us, the parents, to do the limbo and ensure a safe online space for our kids.