Should My Kids Have Any Technology They Want?
By Fin Sheridan
What toys did you have when you were younger? The level of technology they had will obviously depend on your age but it’s safe to say that, as technology has developed and become more affordable, it’s become normal for children and young people to have one or more internet connected devices.
It’s not my place to tell you how to parent your kids so that’s not where this is going. However, the pressure from keeping up with the Joneses, the ease of just letting your child go on the iPad to stop them complaining and the normality, availability and usefulness of tablets and mobiles means that we can often feel like we don’t have a choice.
We do though. Not only do we have a choice; it’s a significant one. It’s a lot harder to go back on a decision: to take away constant internet access once it’s been given. There’s a deeper problem as well: although there are obviously things that aren’t appropriate or even right online, ultimately the internet and technology isn’t good or bad. It’s a human construction and a human problem. Like nearly everything in the world, we can either choose to use it for good or bad. Your children will either use it for good things (like Superbook, hint hint) or bad things (the list is long…).
“What you allow in younger years will eventually bear fruit in teenage years and young adulthood.”
The reality is that we reap what we sow. We see this especially clearly in the lives of children. The Bible tells us to “train a child in the way that they should go and when they’re older, they will not depart from it.” What you allow in younger years will eventually bear fruit in teenage years and young adulthood. Whilst they have their own choices and their own free will, you can set them up to win by sowing good seed now.
Maybe you should allow your son or daughter to have a tablet or an iPod, with internet access. There’s much for them to learn, experience and enjoy online and the world that they are growing in will need them to have good IT skills. However, be careful and be wise. They need to be protected online. Constant use might not be the best thing for them. And you, as a parent, have to be okay with what your choices here are sowing.