About two years ago, we bought Anna her first computer. I wrote about that purchase, and the increasingly comfortable relationship between kids and technology, on this blog.
Anna got a new computer this week. It was an early present in advance of her sixth birthday. She’s played educational games on Julia’s computer for several months now, she also works on both iMacs and iPads at her Kindergarten, and she can dial out on our iPhone. She’s ready.
She’s not quite six and she’s already immersed in technology. Realizing that got me thinking about how different her childhood has been from mine and from Julia’s.
She continues to work with MacBooks, iPads, and iPods at her new school. Technology is a constant in her young life, and so last Sunday on her eighth birthday, we took the next step forward and bought Anna her own iPad.
I think she was a bit shocked at first. We were expecting a big reaction when she unwrapped it, something like …
“An IPAD? WOW!!!”
Instead we got …
“Oh, an iPad.”
I know it hadn’t sunk in yet. While we didn’t get the initial reaction we hoped we would, she played with it most of the day, showing us through her actions just how much she loved it.
By that evening she’d taken over 1100 photos—most of herself and her stuffed animals with the front-mounted camera—and shot about 15 minutes of video. We thinned her files down a bit and backed up the rest so she wouldn’t run out of room.
She also changed the clock from twelve to twenty-four hour and set the iPad to airplane mode.
But she’s learning by doing and we’ll guide her along the way.
We spent a big chunk of time yesterday downloading apps. Some games, but mostly educational programs—including some she works with at school.
We also bought her a keyboard cover and a carry bag to keep it safe. Now she has her own “laptop” like Mom and Dad. She likes that too.
But even though her iPad is her new favorite thing, she still loves reading, she still works hard at her studies, and she still enjoys physical play. No worries limiting screen time—she does a great job balancing her schedule on her own.
How about you? How much are your kids into technology and do you have trouble limiting screen time? Let me know in the comments. Thanks.