International Youth Day: How to Support Your Child’s Digital Learning
By Lauren Noakes
Published 12th August 2020
Last modified 3rd March 2023
Last modified 3rd March 2023
Technology has become an integral part of every aspect of our lives – from the professional world to our social interactions and even in our romantic lives. It’s only natural, therefore, that our children are quickly adapting to this new technological landscape – as unsettling as we might find it.
However, technology needn’t be so scary. So long as we encourage responsible behaviours from an early age, there is no reason for children to grow up consumed by it or confused by it. Instead, they can simply identify it for what it is – a helpful resource that can help them better learn about the world.
As such, this International Youth Day, we’re running through our tips for supporting your child’s digital learning!
With technology advancing at an increasing rate, it can be tempting to indulge for long periods of time, and for a child, this temptation can be heightened – particularly if they know the activity is off-limits.
A simple step to take is introducing a well-planned schedule and sticking with it. If you agree that they can use their phone, tablet or games console for one hour, then do exactly that!
You might be bored of this one, but your children will look towards the example you set before establishing their own behaviours – which means you need to adopt a healthy and balanced technological relationship if you don’t already have one.
If you’re working on introducing a schedule, as mentioned above, then why not similarly comply where possible. This will demonstrate that technology should be a restricted resource for everyone in the household and not just your children.
Now, a common dilemma for almost any parent is establishing a transparent and trusting relationship with their child when it comes to technology. More often than not, this isn’t because we don’t trust them individually, but rather the other people that could contact them through various virtual platforms.
To give you peace of mind, and ensure your child’s safety, you could consider investing in parental control apps and services. These services will allow you to track your child’s online activity and make sure that they aren’t visiting any sites that could be harmful. Should you identify something you don’t love the look of, these apps will allow you to place a website blocker on them – so your child won’t be able to return to it.
Whilst some people will swear that technology can only rot our youths’ brains, it’s not strictly true. In fact, technology can offer a helping hand in a number of ways – for example, enhancing their communication skills. By introducing technology in tandem to real verbal interaction, children can become more confident with communicating – with you, their friends and with their imagination.
Our advice is, don’t shy away from technology. In fact, let it help you. If your child is struggling to get to grips with maths, track down an age-appropriate application and work through it together. If they don’t have a firm grasp on reading, then find some fun literary resources that can help. If they’re becoming increasingly creative, then let them play around with some platforms or applications that encourage it.
In short, whilst technology should not replace the wide array of childhood experiences you’d hope for them, it equally shouldn’t be something to be scared of.
Whilst there is no sure way to guarantee your child won’t cause accidental damage to a device, we can ensure that they adopt cautious behaviours to minimise the risk. By telling them that the phone, tablet or console is breakable and they have to be careful when using it, you could save yourself some time and money in the long run.
But, of course, as a precautionary measure, it’s never a bad idea to invest in a comprehensive insurance policy just in case the worst happens.