My personal experience growing up was jam packed with technology from kindergarten to college. What I find very interesting is how children that are very young now are growing up with technology. I have a good amount of little baby cousins and many of them know how to work tablets, smart phones and computers. My senior year of high school I went on a cruise to Mexico and I remember being in one of the dining halls one night. All of my friends were sitting there talking when we noticed the table next to us. There were two parents sitting at a table with four kids- two girls and two boys. All four children had their eyes glued to their iPads while playing games. After gawking at them for a few moments I could not realize what I was more shocked about: the fact that these four year olds had iPads or the fact that their parents were encouraging them to play on them at the dinner table. I was not raised this way at all so this was so hard for me to fathom, do parents really think it is okay to let their children become so addicted to technology at such a young age? If I were growing up in this time would my parents have done the same thing? Regardless it is crazy to see how younger generations are growing up with technology because they are so much more involved with it than I was at that age.
Another thing that really shocked me: I logged onto Facebook one day when I was bored at work. My cousin had posted a picture of his one year old daughter sitting in a chair at 2 AM watching TV. And no I am not kidding…I attached the screen shot below. I could not believe that this one year old was able to leave her room in the middle of the night and go turn on her favorite channel to start watching it. What was her mind set while doing this? Was she so bored that instead of sleeping she wanted to watch TV? Or is she so addicted to media that she felt like she had to because she wanted to go watch it so badly? When I was that young I may have made a scene in the middle of the night but I don’t think I would have ever gone downstairs to watch TV in the middle of the night. The only thing I could imagine blaming this on is how children are raised. And I don’t mean how their parents raise them but how their parents let technology raise them and affect them. For example, if in kindergarten a child is taught to use a computer in school than they are going to do this at home too, and they’ll do it a lot. Children mimic what they do in school because that is what they are taught is right.
The only solution I could possibly come up for this is for parents to teach children how to balance technology (including social media) with a face to face social life. Sure let your children play computer games and video games but also make sure they go outside and play and have play dates with their friends where they ride bikes or go swimming or do something physical. Future generations should not have an extreme issue with technology as long as we learn how to properly grow up with it. Yes we will all still social network in the future but we do not need to let it consumer our lives by the time we are eight years old. I’m also sure that children will continue to get cell phones at very young ages but as long as we teach them when it is appropriate to use it and when it is not appropriate to use it, everything should be fine. As long as we control technology, technology will not be able to control us.