Raising a child in modern world sets a couple of new rules for parents to follow. As many children learn to type and browse web pages even before they learn to write and read, helping your kid navigate in this new world of real and virtual possibilities is a must for every caregiver. As parents are the most important role models in every kid’s life, seeing us use Tablet PC’s in our everyday routine makes this device a desirable present for many preschoolers and young children. And though many parents and experts in child psychology question the necessity of early introduction of Tablet computers in kids’ lives, the reality is, many kids as young as three or four years old are the happy owners of Tablet PC’s, and a lot of children day-dream of getting this device for Christmas.
Advantages And Disadvantages of Tablet PC’s For Young Children
Before you decide whether your child should have a tablet right now or can do without one for a few more years, look at advantages and disadvantages of such a purchase.
- One of the most obvious advantages of introducing your kid to a Tablet PC in early age is educational value of this device. Tablet PC’s have a variety of educational, yet entertaining apps (including those you can download for free) that can help your kid learn more about the world around us, develop visual word and sound associations, as well as learn to count, read, write, develop attention, memory, art skills, etc. Tablet PC’s touch-screen technology gives kids the “action-reaction” that creates anticipation and keeps them interested while developing hand-eye coordination (Think finger-painting programs, for example).
- Tablet PC’s are fun. They can keep your kid occupied for rather extended periods of time and never lose the novelty of discovery thanks to an endless source of interesting apps. Another big advantage of this kind of computers is that most of them are really kid-friendly now.
- Tablet PC’s can become a good bonding time for your kid and yourself as you can always join your child and share the fun of discovery, education or game-playing.
- Tablet PC’s are portable and light-weight so your kid can take his Tablet PC anywhere and anytime as the battery life of such device is long enough to entertain your child during a long car trip or overnight at Grandma’s house.
- Despite all the educational value of Tablet PC’s there is still a risk of misusing the device. Though it is not always effective, close monitoring of what your child actually uses his tablet computer for is essential for avoiding misuse. Kid-friendly browsers and apps are of great help, too.
- Tablet PC are of little help if you try to limit your kid’s screen time. The screen’s glowing light is bad for eye-sight, while inactivity traditionally associated with TV and computer watching is linked to major health problems, like diabetes and overweight, as well as developmental and mobility issues.
- Health problems aside, you should also consider the social and psychological aspects of using a Tablet computer (just like any other kind of computer, by the way) as it can lead to depression, poor social skills, disengagement, damage a child’s ability to empathize, as well as cause addiction so strong kids require therapy.
- Tablet PC is not a cheap toy.
If you decide to get your young kid a Tablet PC (or you have already got one) remember that tablets cannot (and should not) replace traditional media, such as markers and crayons, while they are pretty good at motivating kids in the learning process and giving them options to use their imagination.