‘Don’t fear your kids’ tech tantrums’

Let’s start by separating the “lazy parent” argument from the “kids shouldn’t have devices” argument. You can be a good parent and let your kids play on the iPad, and you can be a bad parent with a house full of encyclopaedias.

As a tech-savvy parent wanting to raise tech-savvy children, I’ve certainly heard pushback from well-meaning but ultimately wrong-thinking friends and relatives who think that my children’s use of technology, whether it be iPad, iPod or whatever, makes them soft or is an example of lazy parenting.

Marshall talks about how his daughter’s exposure to technology and media has helped her develop more critical thinking skills, patience and reinforcement of good behavior. That parallels my own experience.

  • Steven Fisher

    My brain keeps tripping on “encyclopaedias.” Most UKisms I at least recognize, but that one (if it is one) is new to me.

    • gjgustav

      It’s more of an “original spellingism” than a UKism. Like paediatrics. I guess to get really pedantic it’s pædiatrics and encyclopædias.

      • Steven Fisher

        Old-but-not-quite-archaic, then? Thanks.

  • lucascott

    Letting your kids use tech, among other things is vastly different than them only using tech and never going outside.

    Also, don’t come complain to me when your kids rack up a huge bill in some game that was possibly rated at a higher age than they are because you didn’t bother to know your device and account work. Or when you buy your 8 year old a top of the line iPhone, don’t get AppleCare or some other insurance and have to pay $200+ cause they broke it.

  • How about “don’t fear your kids’ tantrums,” period?

  • My parents taught me that if I wanted to have nice things beyond what I needed, I’d have to work for them and earn them.

    This worked out very well for me. I learned to value the things I own because I paid for almost all of it myself. From my first organiser through my first laptop (which was my first own PC) up to everything that’s laying on my desk right now.

    There never were tech tantrums in our house because I owned my tech ever since I was 14.

    I’m going to do it a bit differently with my kids. They’ll be equipped with a few nice things (if I can afford it), but they’ll be taught from the very beginning that these things are privileges and that they’re not entitled to them.

    I think it’s very important that kids are comfortable with information technology in this day and age.

  • Domicinator

    My son’s kindergarten class has almost no tech in it, and I’m glad. He is surrounded by tech at home–at school he needs to interact with other kids.