Technology in education isn’t just for older students. There are a ton of resources out there for early childhood educators and their students, and many young children are already able to use the technology available to them. They’re even calling today’s preschoolers “Generation C”, aka the connected generation.
In years past, parents were supposed to prepare their young students for kindergarten so that they would be well equipped to start their formal education. Kids were supposed to know how to count to ten, grip a pencil, identify shapes and colors, and so on. Today, students entering school have a few more items on their must-know list – all related to technology. How much should kids really know when it comes to technology? What is the appropriate amount of device usage for young students? Has device usage increased as much as we think it has over the years?
The handy infographic below takes a look at all of the issues surrounding technology for children. Keep reading to learn more!
Technology For Children
Today’s youngest students are expected to already have some technical know-how. So what is on that list?
- How to use a mouse to move the cursor on the screen
- Know where the main buttons on a keyboard are
- Have familiarity with at least five interactive applications, games or activities
- Know some technical terminology, like: digital camera, iPad, computer, internet, mouse, keyboard, and printer
- Be able to type their name on a QWERTY keyboard
- Understand the basic functions of an internet browser
Stats On Technology Use By Young Children
- 25% of kids are using the internet daily by age three
- 50% of kids are using the internet daily by age five
- For kids 8 and younger, 27% of all digital media is screen-based
- 60% of all best selling educational apps are geared towards preschool children
- 30% of apps on parents’ devices are downloaded by their children
- Pediatricians recommend no screen time for children under two, and a maximum of 1-2 hours per day for ages 2 and up.
Technology Addiction Is Real
Children as young as four have been treated for technology addiction. Some of the signs are…
- Constant preoccupation with technology
- Vast amounts of time spent engaged with technology
- Withdrawal from social situations to use a device
- Tired and irritable due to lack of sleep
- Bored when not using a digital device
- Compromised school performance due to focus on technology
- Withdrawal from previously enjoyable activities to play with devices
Guidelines For Healthy Technology Use
- How can parents and teachers help children unplug? (And don’t forget, that we probably need to do it, too!)
- Unplug yourself – youth often emulate adults
- Designate no-tech time
- Explore alternatives to technology as a family
- Create a productive role for the child that they don’t need technology for
- Address outdoor activities and outdoor safety
- Meet developmental milestones through movement and touch
- Be informed about technology overuse