Since the past few years we have seen that technology has completely revolutionized the way we work, and socialize with people. There are some people who claim that technology is fundamentally bad for kids. It acts as a hindrance with the child’s development and exposes them to external dangers.
On the other hand, some people see the major benefit of technology in the area of academic development compared to earlier generations. Though technology provide several positive advantages for learning, it also has various adverse impacts on the development of child and its quality of life.
Positive Effects Of Technology
Aids in Education
The benefits of technology in the area of learning can’t be ignored. There are several technological devices such as tablets, smartphones, iPad laptops etc. all serves as an effective tool for teaching. It has also been seen that students who studied using these gadgets scored better than the ones who studied using traditional teaching methods.
These tools can be used to access information from any part of the world. Using these tools, you can learn any new skill or subject easily. Many students even avail online courses that are delivered by reputed lecturers at the comfort of their home. Thus, digital tools will definitely help in enhancing talent and skills in his fundamental years of child’s development. It is beneficial to boost comprehension skills and academic records of a child.
Better decision-making skills
Children who use technology and internet on a regular basis are seen to have improved problem-solving brain functions and decision-making. They are capable of dealing with quick cyber searches extremely well.
Interesting way to learn
Technology helps a student to take vocational training who do not prefer studying traditional academic subjects. It also provides umpteen opportunities to students in areas of occupational learning.
It supports education and presents opportunities to students to generate interest in various productive ways. There are technological videos that help them learn new skills, games to boost their vocabularies, and e-books to enhance their learning experience.
What is the recommended and safe exposure of technology for a child?
Technology isn’t an issue when used moderately. Health experts recommend that there should be no exposure to technology before the age of two. Also, children above 2 years, should be allowed to have technological exposure for one or two hours daily with entertainment media.
However, in present society, it has been seen that children mostly exceeds this suggested time frame. To get the most out of the benefits of technology in childhood, there has to be a balance in its use.
Negative Effects Of Technology
Lacks The Skill To Self-Regulate And Self-Soothe
You can ask any parent and they will tell you how difficult it becomes to control an agitated child. Technology is one of the beneficial ways to distract and calm their tantrums. A tablet, cellphone etc. can quickly calm a furious child. However, the distraction of cell phone devices can adversely impact the opportunity of a child to learn to self-regulate and self-soothe himself on his own in those critical moments.
Children who use technological devices for a lot of time are exposed to extended screen time. They are at a high risk for delays in getting speech. For every half an hour increase in screen time, there is seen a fifty-percentage increase in the possibilities of reducing expressive ability of a student. Exposure to technology interferes with the ability of the child to build and use language.
Researchers have defined “screen time” that includes television, phones, video games, and tech toys. Parents need to help out their children to lower their overall screen time. As per the research carried on students using technological devices, it has been seen that excessive use of screen time or inferior quality screen time leads to following disorders:
- behavioral problems
- less time for playing
- loss of social skills
- sleep issues
- obesity, and
Children who dedicate a lot of time in working with digital devices experiences sign of eye strain. It is required for the parents to watch out for such symptoms in their children and encourage them to take visual breaks at regular intervals of time.
There has been seen a correlation between use of technological devices and simulated violence. Playing video games lead to heightened aggression in children. Exposure to violent video games make children argue with teachers or peers. They become less empathetic and get easily influenced by real life situations that involves violence.
Deteriorates Physical Activity
Children spend a lot of time sitting while working with technological devices. The sedentary lifestyle that these portable devices presents should be replaced by physical activity like playing outdoor games. It has also been seen that children get too much engrossed in digital devices, that they even forget their vital day to day tasks such as sleeping, eating, etc.
Adversely impact Academic Performance
Technology gives rise to “Attention Deficit” disorder in children who are in constant exposure to it. This limited attention time period influences the manner in which a child accomplishes in the classroom. Due to increase in the use of social media and cell phone, they are seen to lack the attention duration to read assignments.
Technology accustoms human brains to continuously switch between tasks, that leads to lowered attention spans. Their brains have the tendency to jump from one task to another instead of staying on one.
Reduces Interpersonal Interactions
Depending on technological gadgets to distract children, results in reduction of the interpersonal interactions. Instead of reunion with a sibling or a friend, or going on a family trip, they are continually equipped with technology. They would prefer accessing technology than to interact with their parent, sibling, or a friend, parent that may be important to sort a long-term issue.
Hampers Emotional Development
Relying on technology for communication hinders the interactive abilities and communication skills in people. It creates a sense of detachment towards the feelings of people who surrounds them. Screen time has replaced activities such as playing outdoor games, interacting with peers in person, exploring new things, listening to others, being empathic to others, etc.
Childhood is a very critical stage for the development of the child. It is a very subtle process that builds the foundational understanding of a child about the world. The way the technology is used determines its impact on the child’ development. Limited and sensible use of technological gadgets for improvement of learning, enhancing knowledge, etc. will help him in his development.