Today there are more and more technology based toys than ever making their way to the toy aisle at your local department store. The LeapPad 2 and Innotab 2 learning tablets, for example, give kids something very similar to a tablet that they can use to learn about many things, including how to use a tablet computer.
Some people, ‘experts’ included, think that there may be too much reliance on technology and that the play value of many toys these days isn’t as valuable as it was years ago. Some think that, just like with TV, our children are staring at a screen more than they actually physically play outside and get some much needed physical exercise.
While this might be true in some ways the simple fact is that, as they get older, nearly all children will be introduced to technology in school, then college and then in the ‘real’ world. This will be in the form of computers that they will need to study, write reports and then use to make a living. Cell phones, apps, tablets and laptops are in their future also.
Knowing this, isn’t it a good idea to introduce them to this technology at an early age? My 13 year old, for example, already knows how to make a PowerPoint presentation and has for several years. I know 40 year olds who don’t know how to do that, including his mother. He also knows how to make a mean Lego apartment building so I know he’s not spending too much time in front of a TV, tablet or smart phone.
In any society the people who know how to make the most out of the latest technology are usually the ones who do the best, make the most money and have the most success. If letting our children play with technology gives them an edge I think it’s well worth it, especially for the parent who can make sure that they know how to use it well.