Nobody thought it was the youngest in the house who would reign supreme over the I-Pad, also one of Time Magazine’s top 50 inventions of 2010. It was actually a child who would have the most to gain from it—both in terms of entertainment and education.
My 3-year old daughter’s world is so much different from mine when I was her age. Before the I-Pad arrived, she was drawing and coloring on paper, and playing with 3-D toys. We would read books together in a conventional way, and would teach her numbers and the alphabet using flash cards, save for the educational DVDs at home. But now (and far surpassing these DVDs) the I-Pad allows her practically to do everything virtually. I can’t blame her. Who doesn’t want to draw and paint without the hassle of ink spatters and starting over after a mistake? Who doesn’t want to solve puzzles without pieces always getting lost? And to think she can do all these while the music of her choice is on or while a voice teaches her the colors and the alphabet. Simply put, the unparalleled multi-task feature of this day and age makes learning more fun and interesting. Entertainment and learning have never been this intertwined. Just to illustrate, my daughter now learns her basics and foreign languages with motion pictures and games.
If we’re talking about Information Technology for Kids, this is it. Gadgets like the I-Pad surprise me every time I’m with my daughter. These days, she utters new words and does things we didn’t even teach her.
Parents have to face the reality that the challenges are so different now. We have to keep abreast with the times to fully understand which things are helpful and which ones are not. Regulation is easier now because my wife and I handpick the programs we download. But it’s only a matter of time when our children get their hands on the internet, and the floodgates of information will be open.
Christopher John P. Lao
Entry # 4