Parenting can throw up a myriad challenges. However, the most common one that binds us is, of course, the dilemma about how much technology can we let our children use. “Is my child addicted to the screen?” is a question that haunts us all.
Unlike us, Generation Z was born into technology and is growing up with it. They know how to use smartphones and other devices like the back of their hands. This generation enjoys an organic relationship with technology. It is not uncommon for us to see babies as young as a year old, swiping the phone screen left and right.
For most of us struggling with work at home and engrossed in work from home, a device at hand acts as a baby sitter, entertaining our children and keeping them engaged. While this sounds like a perfect arrangement, it is actually a very dangerous trend.
The many side effects of prolonged screen time (smartphones, tablets, laptops and TVs) in children include reduced attention span, hyperactivity, behavior issues, insomnia and even mood swings. The constant struggle over accessing devices also leads to anxiety in children and in parents as well.
However, condemning all technology is not a solution. We need to take a balanced view of its usage. We also need to ensure that it is used in a positive way that maximizes learning for our children. Regulating screen time is also a must.
A perfect example of using technology for learning is how schools across the world have switched to online teaching in the midst of a pandemic. Online education has come to the rescue of scores of students who continue to learn and interact with their teachers in real time.
Thus, while we cannot wish away devices from the lives of our children, we can learn how to use technology as a positive parenting tool.
Written By:- Ms Vasudha Dixit, Primary Wing teacher, MRIS Charmwood