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3 Misconceptions About Tech Use With Young Kids

Written by

Tammy Clegg

Is tech use okay for my young kids or students? It’s a question on top of a lot of parents’ and educators’ minds. No doubt, technology use has increased in classrooms and also in a lot of homes, especially after the Covid pandemic. Many of our parents and teachers have questions around what (if any!) screen time is okay for their very young kids and students – as well as its effects on social & emotional skills. Here are three common misconceptions about young kids and tech use, explained by Noggin advisor Tammy Clegg!

My kids or students are too young for media use

I don’t think there’s any age limit to digital media, now that technology is so ubiquitous in our everyday lives. It’s helpful for everyone, and there are apps out there for all ages. I’ve seen a lot of learning apps for toddlers, like Noggin, that help young kids learn skills and spark their curiosity about the world around them.

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Screen time is the only way to engage kids with technology

Technology doesn’t only have to mean screen time! When people think of technology in the classroom, often they’re imagining kids with their heads down into screens. But there are many tools that facilitate kids engaging deeply in their physical environment. For example, with Fitbits, children can track their steps and monitor their activity throughout the day. During my research, I designed a tool that allowed kids to see their heart rate and breathing in real time. They could see, “Oh, when I started doing jumping jacks, my heart started beating faster.”

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Technology will impede my child’s social skills

A preconception people have about technology is that it isolates people. But it actually has the ability to strengthen social skills! Without technology, I don’t know how any of us would have made it through the pandemic. When kids play games, they can have conversations and virtual chats and get on FaceTime or video calls. It promotes these social interactions we weren’t able to have before. Still, it’s good to place boundaries and time limits for kids, as extended screen time may affect them in other ways, such as their vision. And if kids don’t use it in social ways, it can definitely provide an isolating experience. Fortunately, technology provides so many new ways to share with each other, and parents can also use it to engage kids in other social ways. For instance, they can participate in tech use alongside them or start discussions about their interests and what they are learning or playing through technology. It can spark new conversations and ideas!

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Read more from Tammy Clegg and discover her Teacher Tech Tips for the Classrooms

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New content added weekly

Accessible on multiple devices

Downloadable books & games for offline play

About Ailey

Since its first historic performance in 1958, Ailey has been innovating and evolving the perception of American modern dance throughout the world. Noggin is honored to partner with them in helping kids all over get up moving, learning, and expressing their feelings through dance. Because movement has meaning when we dance how we’re feeling!