Is technology beneficial for children under the age of five?

Is technology beneficial for children under the age of five?

In the present-day society, people are increasingly exposing their children to technology. Handheld gadgets like mobile phones, tablets and e-games have considerably improved the ease of access and application of technology, resulting to rising usage, particularly by young kids. The main learning and sustenance for young children, particularly under the age of two years comes from their interaction, mainly with their parents or any other person who is taking care of them. The use of a Smartphone or iPad to soothe a toddler may hamper their capability to learn self-regulation (Klorer, 2009).  The utilization of a tablet or Smartphone to distract a toddler’s attention could be harmful to their social-emotional growth. There are some arguments that, giving children more access to technology provides them with chance of advance in learning how to utilize them and hence giving them an edge in thriving in an ever more automated world (Klorer, 2009). Technology is also believed to give kids extraordinary capabilities to interact with other children from all over the world, giving them ways of discovering the world around them. Regardless of these benefits, dependence on computers and its tools is inhibiting children’s growth of real face to face social skills which are essential in the real world’s accomplishments. Technology deprives children of normal play, exercise and in some instances even hindering their brain development. The drawbacks of technology on children under the age of five years therefore far outweigh its benefits and hence it should not be allowed for children under the age of five.

When an infant is in the age of between 0 and 2 years, its brains triple in size, and it carries on with that state of rapid growth up to the age of 21 years (Klorer, 2009). Early brain growth is determined by ecological stimuli. Stimulation to a shaping brain caused by increased exposure to technological tools like mobile phones, internet and Television has negatively affected executive functioning, caused attention deficit, cognitive delays, weakened learning, amplified impulsivity, and reduced capability to self-regulation (Klorer, 2009).

The use of technology limits movement and hence causing delayed growth.  Currently, one in every three children entering school is developmentally delayed and thereby negatively affecting literacy and academic success (Mizen, Hutchby, Pole, Moran-Ellis, & Bolton, 2001). Movement improves concentration and learning capability, therefore the use of technology in children under the age of 5years, is detrimental to their development

TV and video game use correlates with increased obesity and study shows that, children who are permitted to use these devices have 30 percent increased occurrence of obesity (Mizen, et al., 2001). Thirty percent of kids with obesity are likely to develop diabetes, and be at danger for getting stroke and heart diseases, seriously cutting life expectancy. As a result of obesity, 21st century kids may be the first generation that many of whom may not live longer than their parents. Majority of parents do not take charge of their kid’s technology usage, and most children uses technological devices in their bedrooms (Klorer, 2009).

The excessive use of technology is believed to be the causal factor in growing rates of child depression, nervousness, attachment disorder, attention shortfall, bipolar disorder, phobia, and problematic child conduct (Mizen, et al., 2001). One in every six Canadian children has a diagnosed mental sickness and majority of them are on risky psychotropic prescription.

Young children are more and more exposed to growing incidence of physical and sexual aggression in modern media, these violent media substance results to child aggression. The American government has classified media aggression as a Public health threat because of causal effect on child aggression (Klorer, 2009). Media reports enlarged use of restraints and isolation rooms with kids who show signs of uncontrolled aggression (Mizen, et al., 2001). High speed media substance can cause attention deficit, in addition to reduced attention and memory, attributable to the brain pruning neuronal tracks to the anterior cortex (Klorer, 2009).Children who are not capable of paying attention in classes are not able to learn properly. Since are parents increasingly connecting their children to technology, they separate from them. In the absence of parental connection, detached kids connect to devices and hence leading to addiction.

Mobile phones and other handheld devices have been categorized by the World Health body as a possible carcinogen because of radiation emission (Klorer, 2009). Children are more susceptible to a multiplicity of agents when compared to adults. This is because their brains and immune structures are on development phase thus making their risk higher when compared to adults.

The techniques in which kids are brought up and educated with technology are not sustainable any more. (Mizen, et al., 2001). Children are the future of any society, but there cannot be any future for kids who overuse technology.  Parents may not be able to constantly control what their children use computers for and therefore it is easier to deny access instead of being a censor. Parents ought to discourage their kids from using computers and smart phones at a tender age instead of protecting them from the consequences of technology. Parents should first understand their children’s emotional as well as physical development prior to handing them a Smartphone or any other technological device. There are those toddlers who can operate the phone very easily but for some it can be a frustrating experience. If a kid turns out to be frustrated with technology at a premature age, they may develop a dislike to it which can stick with them for a very long period of time.

 

 

 

References

 

Klorer, P. G. (2009). The effects of technological overload on children: An art therapist’s perspective. Art Therapy, 26(2), 80-82.

Mizen, P., Hutchby, I., Pole, C. J., Moran-Ellis, J., & Bolton, A. (Eds.). (2001). Children, Technology, and Culture: The Impacts of Technologies in Children’s Everyday Lives. Psychology Press.