In my short life time, I have seen computers go from only being in the classroom having only Organ Trail and Kidpix to having a computer at the touch of a finger. I remember when it was cool to have a pager and unheard of to have a cell phone. Technology is a wonderful thing, but when is it too much?
We see campaigns for Play60 in which motivates children to get up and move for at least 60 minutes. Growing up we didn’t need campaigns for us to get up and go outside to play. We didn’t have so many distractions and TV wasn’t as popular past time as it is today.
So is all technology bad? No, actually technology can be a wonderful thing if used in moderation or to advance education. My son does so much better learning by watching someone. Having and interactive game where he can put the pieces together or touch the screen with the answer, allows him to learn the best way for him. Trying to put a paper workbook with the same information he wouldn’t get nearly the same amount.
So how do we know when it is too much? Truthfully that is something that ranges from child to child and day to day. Some days my son is really into the Mickey Mouse games online and other days we are building blocks. I tend to follow his lead. If it seems that one day he wants to a lot more sitting and chilling, playing games online (of course age appropriate and with supervision) that is what we do, other days all he wants to do is be outside and be a BOY!
Our jobs as parents is to monitor how much and what technology they are interacting with. I am not a parent that will put the DVD player on in the car just to go to the store. I am not the parent that will let my children watch inappropriate TV or games. I am the parent that understands technology will be here and learn how to work with technology instead of pushing against it.