Everywhere you turn there are articles about the dangers of screen technology. Recent articles have focused primarily on the dangers it poses to our children; children as young as toddlers and preschoolers. But, is it all bad?
There are an increasing number of professionals and studies coming out about the benefits of engaging in screen technology. Benefits such as earlier visual perception and cognitive gain have been cited among other skills as being achievable as a result of this technology. So where does that leave us? As parents, a decision must be made about how much time your child will spend on this technology. While specific guidelines citing how many minutes is not my style, I urge you to keep the following in mind:
- Your child needs to have a large amount of face to face social interaction with peers and people of varying ages.
- Your child should look at you when you are talking to each other.
- Your child should be engaging in imaginative play without the assistance of technology as an entertainment tool.
- You should always discuss what you did when you were using technology.
- Your child should be expected to behave appropriately in large group situations (restaurants, family gatherings, etc.) without the assistance of technology.
A recent New York Times Article, “Hey Kids, Look At Me When We’re Talking” presented a great way to get started.