There were 52.5 million tablets shipped in the last quarter of 2012 according to IDC (Link: http://gigaom.com/2013/01/31/whoa-tablet-shipments-now-more-than-half-that-of-the-pc/). A lot of these tablets are being used in business but many are being used at home and at school. Tablets have become a powerful learning tool for kids and teenagers. There are educational apps that help little ones learn to read and write. There are also apps for older kids and teens, too. With access and affordability of tablets and apps, it’s easy to see why they are becoming the preferred method of learning in schools and at home.
Everywhere from preschools to high schools are using tablets to teach. Many elementary students are learning to write on tablets. High School Students are taking tests and taking notes on their tablets. Depending on their school, they may provide the device or the parent may pick up the tab.
Concerns with Tablet Learning
As always, a concern with using any device that has internet is the safety of your kids online. There are many dangers like cyber bullying and online predators. Just pick up the newspaper and you will see stories of kids committing suicide because they are being bullied or predators posing as teens to try and take advantage of kids. As a parent, your job is to make sure that those bad people are not getting to your children.
Also, when using a tablet for learning, there is always the temptation to surf on the internet and not do their work. This can be detrimental to their learning as well. Per the American Academy of Pediatrics (Link: http://www.aap.org), kids should have no more than 1-2 hours of media time per day. If they are learning on the tablets, it doesn’t leave a lot of time for recreational use. Teens may be tempted to spend extra time on the tablet or forgo doing their school work to play games or go on the internet.
How Do You Keep Kids Safe While Using Tablets
Monitor their usage with a Tablet Monitoring App
Even if your kids haven’t given you reason to doubt, it’s still a good idea to monitor their tablet use. You may just want to check in from time to time. Don’t just trust that they are not visiting sites that they shouldn’t. All kids are curious, even good kids. Sometimes that curiosity gets the best of them and they visit sites that they shouldn’t.
Limit Internet Time
Give your child restrictions to the amount of time that they can use the tablet for personal use. You can monitor that time or set a shut off on the tablets once they have reached that time.
Review Your Childs Assignments
Even though homework is done on tablets, you can still sit down and go over homework with them. This will let you be involved in your child’s schooling and also show them that you are aware of their work and are interested in helping them out. Get apps for children homework and assignment.
Tablets can be a great learning tool or a big distraction for growing kids. Being active and involved in what they are doing will show them you care. Monitoring your child’s tablet use is also part of the equation. Do you use a tablet monitoring app for your kids? Share with us below!
Jamie Kirkendoll is a TESL teacher and nanny. In her spare time, she blogs at Mobile Spy (Link: http://www.mobile-spy.com/tabletspy.html), a tablet monitoring app for parents.