Virtual babysitters are the allies of modern parents, but they do not help the child to manage anxiety, much less self-regulation of their emotions.
Tablets and cell phones alike have recently been called -and jokingly-, “the smart babysitter” or “the digital pacifier”, because believe it or not, it is the new use that many parents are giving them to distract -or worse yet-, calm their children in the middle of a tantrum, or to leave them alone while the parents perform some other task.
For inexperienced eyes, seeing a little boy playing with his mother’s cell phone, biting it, or seeing him calm down and stop crying when given it might not mean anything, but for psychologists and experts in child development, this is a alert to be attended.
But why so much drama for something so normal? You may even think that it is an exaggeration on the part of specialists to declare that a device of this type is harmful when they contain so many games and such attractive activities.
That is why I want to present you some ideas so that you can make your own conclusions.
Young children require parental attention
In these times where new technologies surprise us on a daily basis, we can forget that regardless of all the advances that are made, human beings must follow the natural biological processes necessary for healthy development.
And part of that natural and normal development is that parents spend t ime with their children. Talking, playing, sleeping, arguing, eating and everything in a normal relationship, children need it.
No electronic device can replace the care that a parent can provide their child at any age.
They also require time to play and have physical activities
All children, if not all human beings, require movement to stay healthy; and developing children particularly requireoutdoor games ,walking, climbing, falling and learning to get up, explore and discover, experiment, and feel all kinds of textures, tastes, smells. A tablet or a cell phone will never be able to give these life experiences.
A little one learns to handle frustration and tolerance with experiences
As much as we refuse to accept it, we must understand that tolerance develops like a muscle does, and that tolerance frustration it is overcome as we try again and again to achieve it.
Our levels of patience are developed by facing everything that challenges us; They are not things that only appear and now, they are virtues that are achieved with patience and by facing challenges and challenges of daily life. And a technological device is not the best way to achieve it.
Instant satisfaction and gratification do not help the necessary maturation processes take place
In the last fifteen or twenty years, life has taken such a rapid turn that it has caught us off guard in many ways. We have started to live very quickly in every way: fast food, express services and quick and immediate pleasure or gratification.
Children (and adults) seek immediate recognition, instant rewards, as well as rewards for “lifting a finger.” Therefore, patience, waiting and prolonged effort to achieve something or achieve a goal, are ideas of the past, resulting in,weak spiritsand no willpower; hence the rise of the famous “crystal generation.”
Electronic devices fascinate children, but they do not teach them to regulate themselves
Observe a 2 or 3 year old when he makes a tantrum. Nnothing can get you out of your drama; but then the mother gives him a tablet, the child immediately shuts up and loses himself in what he watches, fascinated. You can see how he moves his hand, and at some point he smiles, and while his eyes are still attentive to the device, the mother thinks that everything is fine. But then, the device is removed and in 3 seconds the child bursts into tears again, equal to or worse than the first time.
The devices calm the child while they use them, but at no time do they help him learn self-control.
What can we do?
* Prevent young children from playing with electronic devices s before 5 years
* Do not use this type of device to stop crying or stop “bothering” you
* Let your kids enjoy outdoor activities
* Allow children to get bored and find what to do
I invite you to read more about tantrums and how it will help children to self-regulate, it takes more time than giving a tablet, but believe me, it is much better for them because it will be contributing to the normal and natural development of life skills.
Read also: What can you do to stop your child’s tantrum?
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