A friend on Facebook posted this article suggesting zero iPad, Tv, computer and phone usage with a lot of research to prove his claims. I understood the author’s point on how too much technology can negatively affect a child’s development. As someone who has a background in speech language pathology, I totally agreed; videos, shows, movies and games impact a child’s language abilities and behavior. As a parent, I literally rolled my eyes at this article. But why?
If I know the negative impacts all of this outside influence has on my young two year old why did I roll my eyes at this article as a parent? Maybe I actually thought life without technology was impossible. Children in elementary are already using computers to learn. It’s good for X to learn how to use technology and besides, his toys are on a boat somewhere in sea. (We are still waiting for our belongings to arrive in Japan).
My son loves Chu-Chu Tv on Youtube. The videos basically go over numbers, letters and colors. Pretty educational… but…. He figured out quickly how to access YouTube and his favorite videos on my phone. When my family and I arrived in Japan, we decided to get new iPhones and hold onto our old iPhones, so X can use them to watch his videos. Next thing you know, he’s calling our old phones his phone and he knows my phone is mine and daddy’s phone is daddy’s. He’s not allowed to use Mommy’s and Daddy’s phones. Only “his” phone…
Wait! What?? Yes you guys! I fell into the trap! My TWO year old has an iPhone!!!
Everything basically revolves around your phone. You can do everything on it- watch CNN, check social media, watch YouTube, blog, call, text, FaceTime, etc etc etc. EVERYTHING!! Except spend time with your son…
After reading that article, it opened my eyes to how I have created a horrible habit for my child. Anytime we were home, he wanted to watch his videos and he did. On some of the videos, babies were crying. I hate those videos! Sometimes ads would pop up and X would get so pissed. I mean he would throw a huge tantrum. I finally got him to ask for help when an ad popped up. “Help please,” he’d say so I could press DONE or Skip Ad. But then out of nowhere, he would just throw a tantrum.
One time, he somehow posted one of videos, Bad Baby Crying and learn Colors with Surprise Eggs, on my Facebook page! I wouldn't have known if my husband hadn't commented on it.
Oh $#!+!!!!! I’m one of those parents allowing my child to use too much technology! I’m not spending quality time with him… My heart sunk… I looked at my son while I was cleaning my kitchen as he sat on the floor with an iPhone in his hands.
The next day, I dropped him off at school and went straight to the library. It is so crazy because as soon as I walked into the Children’s section, there’s this huge sign that says, “There is not an app to replace your lap! Read to your child.” Oh my goodness! Well, I’m not the only one, I thought. But that’s not good.
38% of parents do not read to their children at least five days of the week, according to Scholastic.
It’s been five days since X has watched his videos. It’s been five days that instead of watching animated children with their parents, him and I are laughing, kissing, talking, reading and learning together. He always chooses The Great and Mighty Nikko, by Xavier Garza to read. He loves that book right now. What a difference this has made in both of our lives. His tantrums have decreased and I actually feel less stressed.
I’m not saying he’ll never look at an iPhone again or never watch his videos, but I’m definitely limiting it to about 30 minutes a day- if that. I’m honestly at peace with no iPhone in his life.