It’s a digital world out there… Promoting education while safeguarding your child in the 21st century

May 24, 2013

Posted in: Balance

Gone are the days of traditional communication… Our children are growing up in a rapidly changing digital age, where information is at their fingertips. Everything is just one click, tap, or voice command away, and more often than not, there’s an app for that.

When used wisely, technology and media can support learning and relationships. We’ve come a long way with technology and how we receive information. Kids are beginning to use various forms at an earlier age, primarily influenced by their parents, and it doesn’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon. Now it’s time for our generation to sharpen our skills in order to educate and safeguard our kids when it comes to technology.

From an educational perspective, technology should be integrated into learning, rather than treated as a stand-alone activity. Kiddie Academy’s director of education, Renee Thompson, advises parents to “encourage active, goal-oriented participation from your children, and make sure the time spent with technology will enhance their traditional resources, not replace it.”

Parents should try to think outside the box when including technology as an instructional tool. There are numerous desktop publishing and writing opportunities for older preschoolers, kindergartners and school age children. For example, you can help your child use templates to create graphs and brochures, or have them practice typing an original sentence or story into a word processing program as an alternative or extension of writing. For children under 2 years, best practice is to avoid technology unless you are reading books, viewing digital photos or engaging in interactive apps.

While we learn with and promote technology, it’s important to safeguard our children as well. Check out Kiddie Academy’s recent article highlighting tools and apps that can help parents keep children safe when using technology like tablets, phones, and computers.