Just got back after a great day at a workshop with Kristy Goodwin, “iPads are Appsolutely Amazing”.
Here is my take on a few of the key points to consider:
1. Technology is not inherently good or evil it is just a tool and therefore it all depends on how, when and why we use it.
2. The majority of “educational” apps are aimed at toddlers – scary but true! These apps tend to focus on drill-based practice for isolated splinter skills eg rote learning of colours, numbers and letter names and therefore have little functional developmental benefit. So, just because it is labelled “educational” doesn’t mean your child will learn from it!
3. Passive screen time for young children (eg TV) is potentially harmful due to the opportunity cost of missing out on other learning activities. Interactive screen time (eg problem solving and physically manipulating items on a screen) has a limited evidence base because the technology is so new but appears to have potential learning benefits.
4. The iPad is revolutionising the way our children learn – let’s make sure we use the tool effectively and don’t get caught up in the hype of either tech-induced-awe or tech-demonising that appears to be so prevalent in the media.
5. Avoid letting children have any screen time before school in the morning and in the last hour or so before bed due to the potential effects on melatonin levels and attention for formal learning activities.
Child with iPad
For a free eBook written by Kristy specifically to guide parents considering iPad use with children check out her website: www.everychancetolearn.com.au