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How to Balance Tech Time and Maximize Its Use

by Laura St. John | September 23, 2011 | Early Education & Literacy

To Plug or Unplug?

From our partners at Discovery Kids Puterbugs

Thirty minutes? One hour? How much time should your child spend using technology each day? In a world where everything runs on technology, the answer is not just about counting minutes. The answer depends on how it’s being used. Any amount of time a child spends on technology — including TV, computer, video games — should be used for a purpose. In order for your child to develop healthy tech habits, early experiences with technology should be meaningful. The more you can connect your child’s virtual tech experiences to the real world, the better!

How to Balance Screen Time

Surfing

Surfing aimlessly is an unhealthy tech habit and waste of time. There is no reason a young child should ever use tech without a purpose. Cancel this one altogether.

Entertainment

Watching videos that have no educational value or simply playing games to beat a level can send kids the wrong message. Limit your child’s exposure in the same way you’d limit TV exposure.

Social

Young children should never be engaged in live social features such as chat, forums, friending or messaging, since these are not appropriate without adult supervision.

How to Maximize its Use

Gathering Information

Turn curious questions into teachable tech moments. The answer is in your pocket! Teach your child how to voice search and find the answer to the question. So, next time your child asks, “How much longer?” show the GPS map to Grandma’s house.

Creative Self-Expression

A great way to foster creative uses of technology is to self-express meaningful events. After your hike in the woods, or visit to the town park, your child can draw a picture about it in an art program, and type a few words or sentences about the experience.

The leaders in technology education at Imagine Tomorrow have teamed up with the experts at Discovery Kids to bring your child Puterbugs, a fascinating way for young children to learn to apply the powerful uses of today’s technology in fun and meaningful ways. To learn more of Tutor Time’s partnership with Discovery Kids Puterbugs, we encourage you to talk to your school’s Director or visit http://www.imaginetomorrow.com/tt.