Wait Until Preschool
– Just because toddlers like to push buttons and watch videos does not mean they are ready for a computer. Experts recommend waiting until your child is at least preschool age. “Children under two years of age learn best from real-world experiences and interactions, and each minute spent in front of a screen-based device is a minute when your child is not exploring the world and using their senses, which is extremely important in their development process.”
– “However, by age three, many children are active media users and can benefit from electronic media with educational content. This content often uses strategies such as repeating an idea, presenting images and sounds that capture attention, and using child rather than adult voices for the characters.”
– -The key is “in a supervised environment.” “Parents should keep media screens in family areas so that a child’s media usage can be monitored, and TVs and computers should be kept out of bedrooms.”
– However do not underestimate the learning power of reading a book with your child or spending time exploring the outdoors. “Parents need to be models for their children. While we’re all embracing these great aspects of these digital devices, parents have to strike a balance, turn them off and spend real time with their children.”
– “I would recommend no more than a half an hour per sitting for a four to five year old, no more than an hour per sitting for a six to seven year old.”
Thanks to PBS parents for quotes.
This is one in a series informational pieces to guide parents in use of technology by their children.
Look for – How to talk to your child about their day at school. And – How adult assistance improves the learning performance of the child.
H. Wagner, Director Techstars by Computer Explorers

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