Monday, February 25, 2013

The Effect Technology is Having on Our Children

Think back to being a young child, can you remember what you were doing at the age of 11? What games were you playing with, and how much time did you spend indoors?

If I was to answer those questions I would start by saying that I remember 11 being an age when I spent most of my time playing with my friends outside, learning new tricks with my yo yo and trading the Pokémon cards I got that weekend. I remember my only concerns were if I was invited to the ‘cool girls’ birthday party, whether my clothes were stylish enough to fit in with the other girls at school, and why mum wouldn’t let me have my ears pierced. Does any of this sound familiar to you?

This was normal for most girls born in the 90s; however it is strange how different things can be 10 years down the line. Our environment is changing and that means so are the new generation. In 10 years’ time our children will have very different stories to tell, and this is because of technology.

Technology

We are lucky enough to live in a society where innovation is a continuous cycle, someone, somewhere is always coming up with something new and even better which means our world is evolving at a constant speed. This is great as we are constantly devouring new things and improved products and services, however have we ever stopped to think what this might be doing on our future generations?

I was raised in an environment where the outdoors and socialising with your friends face to face was the norm, however, because of technology our children are becoming increasingly drawn to technological aspects, rather than face to face interaction. Understandable when our children get to teenagers this is bound to be the case; however, should this really be something we are worrying about for our 11 year olds?

I read an article recently about the technological potty; this is a new potty which has an ipad device attached to the seat used as a training aid. This is supposed to attract children to the potty in order to learn how to use it. This is a great idea in theory, and by the looks of it a very interesting way to train our children, however could this be disastrous for their future?

Don’t get me wrong, I am absolutely obsessed with my iPhone and IPod, and spent a considerable amount of time browsing for IPhone 4 cases for my new toy, but surely this is different for someone who is 21 in comparison to being a 4 year old toddler?

The rise in children who use technology is increasing at a phenomenal rate, some people believe this is a great thing as it is educational, and some people feel it is having a negative effect on the way our children are brought up.

I’m sure everyone has very different opinions on technology and the impact it might have on our future generation, but tell me, what is yours?


this post was written by Alice Lawson, who is working on behalf of Vistaprint.ca, and specialises in design and technology

3 comments:

  1. Children need to connect emotionally with both parents because, and if they do not they will have difficulties with their own relationships later down the line. If a dad truly wants to have a relationship with his children but has not been equipped by his own dad then it will be hard but not impossible. The first step is to seek the good of your children over the fear of opening up. It does not make you less of a man to sit down and talk to your children about what you are thinking and feelings you have about certain subjects. When you share part of your mind and heart with your children you are building a relationship.

    Many times over the years I have had conversations with men who have expressed that they do not know what they are feeling, so how can they express it? It may take a little time and a lot of introspection for a man to figure out what he thinks and feels on certain subjects, but it is not impossible.

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  2. It's a good question, Oren. My family spends so much time inside in front of a screen, even though we don't own smart phones or ipads or anything. We've been talking lately about moving to a place in the mountains where we might be more tempted by the outdoors, more so than in the concrete of southern california. I used to hike all the time, and I'd love to take my three year old out with me every single day into the mountains, away from our TVs and computers.


    But there's no getting around it; our world is a tech jungle, and the only way to hope to survive it is to learn its ways. I don't want my daughter left behind. The best I can think of is to be really consistent about when different tech options are appropriate and available...whether it's "only after homework is done," or "only on weekends," or "only when you've earned it" by doing x or y. I want my daughter to be able to navigate with savvy and care on the internet...but I want her to learn to read books, hand-write letters, and jump in forest streams first.

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  3. I am curious how technology continues to impact communication - both written and oral. The way kids communicate and comprehend has been altered due to technology. What will the long term effects be from this altered communication style?
    Btw, using and ipad to toilet train - huh? Odd.

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