A recent study conducted by security company AVG revealed some interesting research about how children are adapting to an increasingly technology-laden environment. Dubbed ‘Digital Diaries,’ these studies look at how kids are interacting with technology. After polling 2,000+ moms with kids aged 2-5 from countries like the U.S., Canada, France, Spain, Japan and others, here are some of the results:
- More kids aged 2-5 can play with a smartphone application (19 percent) than tie his or her shoelaces (9 percent)
- More small children can open a web browser (25 percent) than swim unaided (20 percent)
- More small children can play a computer game than ride a bike. 58 percent of children aged 2-5 know how to play a 'basic' computer game. For the U.K. and France that jumps to 70 percent. Even 44 percent of 2-3 year olds have the ability to play a computer game. By comparison, 43 percent of kids 2-3 can ride a bike
- European children aged 2-5 lead their U.S. counterparts in knowing how to make a mobile phone call (44 percent in Italy vs. 25 percent for the U.S.), playing a computer game (70 percent U.K. vs. 61 percent U.S.) and operating a computer mouse (78 percent France vs. 67 percent U.S.)
At first glance, these results seem telling. More kids can play with a smartphone app than tie his or her own shoes? More small children can play a computer game than ride a bike? Gulp. What exactly are our kids learning? But then when you step back, how many two-year-olds do you know who can tie their own shoes? And clicking on an icon to launch a web browser is a whole lot easier than riding a bike. I’m not negating the results of the study, but I do think that they can be taken with a grain of salt.
There’s no doubt that our kids are growing up in a highly technological age, but the way in which they interact with said technology is partly on our shoulders. If kids are too immersed in technology at this age, then maybe it’s time to ease up on the kids’ iPhone apps.
If you have a question for Screen Play or would like to submit something for consideration, please contact LetsPlugIn@gmail.com.