Does technology have a place in education? The fascination your child has with technology can be leveraged for learning. Of course you must tailor each child’s daily dose of screen time to their age and to recommendations from professionals, but you can use their tech time for teaching. Downloading games and apps with an educational twist can help your child to learn though play.
Active engagement: Choose games and apps that are educational and require input from your child. Apps and games that require tactile engagement and manipulation of objects around the screen help your child to better remember content and improve their fine motor skills.
Make screen time interactive: Stop them from time to time and ask them to explain the story or the game, ask questions and get them to retell bits of each story to help with communication and comprehension skills.
Problem solving skills: Pick a range of apps and games that require different skills and work different parts of the brain. When you select games that require your child to solve problems, you help them to develop their analytical skills.
Make technology fun: There are games for every skill your child needs to acquire, so make tech time fun. For each new math concept or language skill, you can choose from a plethora of different games and apps to find the one that your child enjoys the most.
Start by looking at the curriculum to see what skills and concepts will be taught over the coming academic year. Then download a number of games and apps for each one that your child can choose from.
Set times for technology: Set a timer on your tablet or smart phone to switch off when the allotted screen time is up. This will help to alleviate any arguments that may ensue when you want to end a session.
Ask your teacher: If you aren’t sure what apps are appropriate tools for teaching, ask your child’s teacher for help. Teachers can help you to get the best apps to teach the skills and concepts that they will be covering in their curriculum or apps that they already use in the classroom.
Stick to the limits: Too much technology, even if it is educational, can lead to behavioral problems, obesity and an inability to socialize well with others. It’s important to keep track of how much time your child is spending on computers, tablets, smart phones and in front of the TV.
Pediatricians from the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend that children should have no more than 2 hours of screen time a day and should not have computers or TVs in their rooms. Of course it’s difficult to limit screen time to just a couple of hours, especially as children get older. However, the more time they spend outside and engaged with physical, academic and family activities, the more likely they are to be healthy and well adjusted.Pic by Kids Making It