Tech for the young

Childhood fantasies of fancy gadgets is nothing new. How long has it been since the last time you’ve seen an elementary school student play the telephone game with their hands by their years pretending as if they’re calling each other? Kids have always been fascinated by the creative and elaborate tricks that characters like James Bond and Batman flaunt in the movies, and it is no doubt that they imitate these awesome gadgets in real life. Partly motivated by marketing (I believe) the toy manufacturing companies developed various toys to keep those kids entetained.

The toys that sell out the most to these kids may be bootleg imitations of gadget heroes, but as technology is increasingly into our daily lives providing modern everyday gadgets to children have become debatable among parents. Do elementary kids really need cellphones? When should a kid be allowed to touch the computer? These are possible questions that may arise in parenting concerns.

Well, here is a possible solution as suggested by a Swiss child psychologist Jean Piaget. Jean Piaget studied his own children and proposed theories about child psychology and children’s mental development. He suggested these four stages in child development, and it may be a solution to look for toys that fit these stages according to the child’s age.

Ages 0-2: Sensorimotor: babies explore for responses that respond to child’s actions
Ages 3-5: Preoperational Stage: children “pretend-play”
Ages 6-11: Concrete Operations: children’s mentality develops, but still has problems understanding abstract ideas
Ages 12+: Formal Operational stage: abstract mind begins to develop

I personally believe it is crucial that children must be introduced to high-level technology at a young age to adapt to the modern world that seems to be literally “programmed.” I sat in front of a computer at a very young age and was a great help in my life, whether it be for entertainment or academics. Now that I’m near the front steps to college, I would love to have a high tech laptop, an iPod, and a top technology cellphone that can probably do anything imaginable. But those would just merely be an upgrade of what I already have, and would not be a whole new change in my life.

-this post is a response to another blog post.


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