Saturday, April 23, 2011

Kids and Technology

Kid's love technology!
As the use of technology rises, so does a younger age group of users. Children are intrigued by the idea of technology! Using technology has become an everyday part of daily life for children of all ages. But now, this issue has created an ongoing debate about whether or not this has a positive or negative effect. The media has dipped their toes in this debate as well. In this entry I will analyze how the media is covering this topic with concerns from a parents perspective.
Huffington Post writter April Rudin wrote an article on April 21st, entitled; Why parents  must be on top of their kids online escapades. Rudin is the parent of three teenage sons, who she has encouraged to actively use technology and go online. Her worries were minute until she attended the International Youth and Technology Forum on Digital Citizenship. Panelist discussions focused on social networking sites; how sites like these give teens the opportunity to create a public image that may or may not reflect the in-person reality. After the conference, Rudin expressed that parents need to take a more active role in learning about technology, as well as engaging in their children's social interactions online.

On April 18th, Jeneba Ghatt of the Washington Times wrote an article that examined both the good and bad of children and the use of technology. Ghatt, who is also a parent, limits her children's use of technology in her household by reducing the amounts of TV and games they consume during the school week, and during meals. She understands that technology can have some negative affects on children but still emphasizes its value. She explained that it's important for kids to know how to maneuver technology. It may help them in the future preparing for and acquiring careers.

In Orono Maine, Auburn schools are preparing to give each kindergartner a iPad. Abigail Curtis of the Bangor Daily News wrote on April 22nd about different opinions teachers, school officials, and parents are having with the idea. Teachers emphasize the usefulness of the iPad to help children learn their alphabet. GeekBeat did a blurb about this in the video below. Parents are sharing their concerns as well. One mom, who's son participates in speech and occupational therapy, stressed the importance of communication and interaction with his peers. She worries that he will instead be distracted by the tool in his hands.

With a very diverse group of opinions from each of these news articles, one thing is for sure, their antenna's are up! Parents are recognizing and understanding that technologies are going to be a part of their children's futures and can have both positive and negative effects. It's their job to help their children put it to good use.

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