Is Technology Changing the Way Children Experience the World?
Technology is pretty much a necessity in the 21st century. It’s likely that you have multiple sources of technology in your home–cell phones, computers, and televisions. And your children likely have access to most of them. Although advances in technology are amazing and can be extremely beneficial, some concerns have been raised over certain uses of technology.
In particular, there are worries that too much technology use is stunting children’s mental and physical development. On the opposite end, some people argue that technological advances help children learn to function in an increasingly tech-savvy world. Here are some things to think about on both sides of the equation.
There’s Information About Nearly Anything at Your Fingertips
One of the best things about using the internet is how much information you can find about almost any topic. While this is undoubtedly great for adults, it’s even more useful for children. Kids are voracious learners, and it’s likely that they’ll pick up and put down plenty of interests throughout their formative years. There is an endless number of hobbies, and the natural curiosity of children lends itself well to trying plenty of them during the first dozen or so years of their life.
Say your child wants to learn how to write songs, but you have no knowledge of the concept. You won’t be able to help on your own. However, what you can do is find a song-writing guide online that your child can use. You don’t have to spend money on hobbies that your child may drop within the next few weeks, while still satisfying their curiosity. As long as you curate the guides that they’re allowed to see and follow, it can be incredibly beneficial.
Blue Light Can Have Health Effects on Both Children and Adults
Electronics and certain energy-efficient light bulbs project blue light, which has been linked to a number of chronic illnesses and conditions. While the long-term risk factors are unclear, some definite short-term impacts do occur.
One of the most important risk factors, especially for children, is that using blue light at night impacts sleep schedules, making it more difficult to fall asleep at the appropriate time. As more research comes out about how children and adolescents need much more than eight hours of sleep every night, this can have a serious effect. Limiting children’s use of electronics at night is an important part of making sure they get enough restful sleep to promote healthy development.
You Can Socialize and Meet Anyone Online
You may not allow your young children to visit any kind of social website. But as your child moves into adolescence, it’s likely to enter the picture. This is both a blessing and a curse. It makes it much easier to meet people with the same interests, and it may help your child find a group to share hobby discussions with. On the other hand, it’s also very easy to meet people with bad intentions online. Anyone can make a profile and pretend to be someone else, and that can be very dangerous, especially with how trusting young people can be.
You want to make sure you and your children will be safe before meeting up with any like-minded people you meet online. If the person is an adult, you can check on them first via a people search site like PeopleFinders. Before you go to a meet-up with your child–even if that meet-up will be with a group rather than one-on-one–run a background check on the person in question (or their parents if they’re under 18). All you need is a first name, last name, and the city and state where the person lives, all of which is pretty easy to find or ask about. Then, you can be more confident attending an in-person event.
At the end of the day, technology can improve the lives of children, or it can stunt their development. Just like anyone else using today’s most advanced technology, kids need to stick to the most useful parts of these technologies while avoiding dangerous or harmful parts. Moderate its use in the evening, so it doesn’t interfere with your child’s sleep patterns. And in the world of the internet, where people’s true identities are often unknown, verify those identities first to take the worry out of friendships and meet-ups.
Be sure to check the PeopleFinders blog for more ideas on how to protect yourself and your children, and how to smartly and safely use technology.
Photo Credit: Monkey Business – stock.adobe.comTags: Children, Health Care, Online Safety, Technology
Categorized in: People Data