Giving your Child a fighting Chance

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Giving your Child a fighting Chance

  It’s a tough world.  Are you apprehensive about your child’s chances? Do you want to give our child a head start in life?  Fortunately you are at an advantage.  As a parent you have your child for the most significant growth years of their lives.  You are your child’s first responder and most important teacher.  However parents BEWARE!  You face massive competition for that role. Industries have exploded with competing agendas for your child This advantage of having your child with you cannot however be optimized by a vague, uninformed guide.  Rather you require hands-on interaction with your child, their environment and continuous engagement with experts in child development. In these blogs we will not stroke your sensibilities in sugar coating facts; rather we will say it as it is. 
So you may take drastic action and stop doing whatever it is that is arresting your child’s development and focus your attention towards the very exciting concept of accelerated learning. SO, first let’s go after the agents of EARLY arrested development.
Smartphones and tablets use among toddlers has increased exponentially in the last decade.  Toddlers are likely to respond more to video screens that initiate interaction, hence the pacifying effect of tablets and thus the substitution of human interaction.  This changes the nature of childhood, replacing playgrounds, toys and storybooks. Infants are now walking up to big screens and swiping them thinking they are tablets. At some point, parents have great regard for these gadgets as a way to pacify their children and later as an entertaining and educational tool.  Children are now learning to use gadgets before they can walk or talk. Is this good or bad? Mostly BAD


Immediately limit your toddler’s interaction with these gadgets. 
5 Reasons Why? 
1.Uncoordinated Brain Development
During toddler years, the brain triples in size. If gadget related content constitutes the majority of what the brain consumes, some  of the results will be long term attention deficiency, impaired learning, cognitive delays, increased impulsivity and a decreased ability to self-regulate.    Alternative Shared Activity: Talk to, read to and sing with your children.
2.Reduced Interaction
With gadgets, they could easily play on their own. Communication is stunted since they surround themselves with inanimate objects. This substitutes human interaction and disrupts the normal communication skill development in children. They may copy and transfer the skill of talking from the screen but fail when socializing with other people. The playgrounds necessitates communication and building relationships. Alternative Shared Activity: Role playing, imitations
Play activity should not be screen based. It should be outside in the playgrounds.  Calories taken have to be burnt. Inactivity leads to obesity, which leads to unhealthy complications such as diabetes and heart related issues. Expose your kids to physical activity then inculcate technology marginally for a healthier lifestyle as they grow. Alternative Shared Activity: Walk together; go swimming, hiking; show them your childhood games
Unregulated use of gadgets will result in behavioral changes. Tantrums are the most common form of manifestation. As they grow older, kids who are hooked to gadgets are more likely to become disagreeable, grumpy, aggressive and confrontational when unplugged. Alternative Shared Activity: Teach them board games, do jigsaw puzzles, treasure hunts
5.Enhanced Pleasure Points
Smart gadgets are marketed on the basis of their space and speed. Massive content at the touch of a finger. Browsing for some children is like running through a toy store sampling every toy. Try replicating that in real life. By over stimulating their brains you’ll be playing catch up in interesting them in more mundane, though important, activities like sitting in a classroom and listening to the teacher.
In a nutshell
Gadgets skirt the normal development of a child.  Given the choice, rather than exploring and learning the ways of the world, kids would rather stay indoors in front of some screen.   Some parents may find technology helpful since they know that the safety of their child while indoors is secured.  However, the downside is that the child becomes a stranger from the natural world of people, animals, plants, rivers, lakes and sky. 
On the up
Gadgets hold developmental potential for toddlers. Technology use by children should be encouraged, age appropriate and moderated.  But bottom line? While you still have them, let their maximum interaction be with you. By Allen Kigira

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