Kids gravitate towards electronic devices. It seems almost from the time they can grasp an object, they’re reaching for TV remotes, cellphones and computer keyboards. It only makes sense they’d want to “grab” an iPad, too.
That begs the question, “Is it okay to let my child use an iPad?” The answer is a resounding yes, and in this article, we’re going to talk about five reasons why it’s okay for the kids to have an iPad.
#1: iPads are Safer than Television
TV these days is mind-numbing and full of advertising that is often inappropriate for young children. Managing what kids watch on television is really difficult. An interesting study on TV usage found the following to be true. An average child:
- Watches 1,680 minutes per week of television.
- Sees 20,000 30-second TV commercials seen in a year.
- Views 8,000 murders on TV by the time he/she finishes elementary school.
- Sees 200,000 violent acts on TV by age 18.
Why are we telling you this? Because the iPad is so much better for your child.
The iPad can be commercial-free. Children can watch shows or movies without being bombarded with advertising. You can control the apps and shows watched.
It’s interactive – kids can build skills by playing educational games and games for fun. It can be taken anywhere, and parents can make the iPad age-appropriate through its Settings.
#2: iPads are Great Learning Devices
We like the iPad as a tool for school age and older children. They can use it for school research or to download apps like a dictionary or thesaurus. Students can engage with curriculum beyond the school setting, and they can visit with online experts.
Take Khan Academy for instance. It’s a great tool to help children and teens with their math skills.
#3: iPads are Portable
Taking an iPad with you on long car trips or airplane rides is one of our favorite iPad uses. Watching a movie or playing a game on the iPad makes long trips seem infinitely shorter.
You’ll say goodbye to the days of fussy car rides when you hand over the iPad to your children. Plus, when used with headphones, each child can listen to their own movie in peace.
#4: iPads are Therapeutic
Children with disabilities benefit from iPad usage. For children who lack motor skills, the iPad is a helpful tool. Computers are usually hard to use because children have to shift their eyes between mouse, keyboard and screen.
With the iPad, kids can watch as their finger takes an action, thus improving fine motor skills.
#5: iPads Encourage Creativity
The iPad is full of creative potential for kids. With the iPad and a few great apps, kids can take and edit photos. They can create interesting, fun videos full of great memories by using the iPad for digital storytelling. This also helps kids make a plan, create a story and follow through.
Kids can explore drawing using just their finger or a stylus with the iPad. For example, kids love cartoons. Download an app and set them loose. You’ll find a large number of creative apps for download in the app store.
The Take Away
If you’ve decided to let your child use an iPad, we have a few suggestions to make sure you’re keeping your child and the tablet safe.
- Put it in a case. The Clumsy Case is the perfect solution for little hands. The case can stand on its own or lay flat. Plus, your kids can drop it, hug it and play with it all while keeping it safe and snug.
- Set parental controls. Under Settings, you can set restrictions such as what types of sites kids can access. Pay special attention to the privacy settings and the Game Center so they aren’t communicating with just anyone.
- You can also download educational apps, games and books and keep the Wi-Fi off so kids aren’t surfing the web.
- Set time limits. The American Academy of Pediatricians recommends that children and teens engage with entertainment media for no more than two hours per day. Screen time includes TV, computer and device usage. So, if you’ve set a two hour time limit that is inclusive of all devices.