Thursday, 6 November 2014

Are Tablets & Smartphones Good For Children?

During lunch time, I saw a boy about 7-8 years old in a restaurant, sitting there and playing tablet games. His mom was standing by his side feeding him his lunch. His eyes were only on the screen of the tablet all the time.

You may not agree with me but I find this scene ugly and heartbreaking.

Many parent let their young children playing with their tablets or smartphones without control. Some children even have their own device at a very young age.

When you go to a restaurant or coffee shop or a wedding dinner nowadays, how frequent can you see children playing games on tablets?

Some parent may find this way perfect to keep their children from disturbing them.

My wife and I share the same view that those tablets and smartphones games are not for young children. However, I believe that many games apps are designed for them.

Even though some parent may argue that there are many "educational" apps for children, I still don't find it right for young children to fix their fragile eyes to the screen everyday.

I don't have a tablet, even though actually I would love to have one. I don't even have a smartphone until my sister gave one to me as a present last year.

Anyway, this does not mean that my kids do not have any exposure to tablet games at all.

I know that sometimes my mom "curi-curi" let her grandchildren playing with her ipad, as she may feel pity for them by not having fun from ipad like many other children have.

I'm alright with this as I know that sooner or later my children will get exposed to it. So I view this as a good way to let them know about ipad. What I do is just to guide them to manage their time spent on ipad.

Luckily so far they are not addicted to it.

Some parent might think that the future is all about internet & smart devices, so we should expose our children early to all these high-tech stuff so that they can gain "advantage" over other children who are not internet or computer savvy.

Some might argue that playing games on tablet or smartphone can help to train children's mental alertness, problem solving skill and finger dexterity.

Personally I don't agree with these ideas. In my view, it can only damage children's eyes, makes them hyperactive, waste their time and negatively affect their social skill as well as parent-children relationship.

Hence, I think we should keep their time on tablet/smartphone as minimal as possible.

To gain advantage on other children, I would put more effort into building good foundation in their attitude, sense of responsibility, sense of love and confidence. It's not to burden them with pressure to get No.1 in class, or attending multiple talent and tuition classes.

Young children will be very happy if you buy them toys or junk food. However, do you notice that the joy is short-lived? What they really need is being recognized, being loved and being accompanied. 


  1. Definitely all these high tech items are not good to the young children especially below 6 years old... those children who have touch with those what pad what note what phones all really hard to focus on their daily learning. .. haiz

  2. Totally agree...nowadays seldom see parents accompany children while waiting for become the iPhone,iPad time before having dinner..sigh

  3. Hi duoyu & Angel,

    Hopefully more parent will realize how bad these smart devices can affect their children. I guess not many parent will share the same view with us...

  4. you did a good job compared to me because when we did the work at night, my kid will mumble and yelling for ipad.

    1. It will be too late when they get "addicted" to it. What you may do is to "sign contract" with them to limit their time on ipad.