I recently had to do some computer troubleshooting for my parents.
My sister and niece were visiting…
… you know where this is going.
My niece (being just over 1-years old) was having a blast playing with grandma’s tablet. A Fire tablet that happens to require your banking info. Yup, the little one somehow ordered some stuff on Amazon.
But that’s not all…
My mom showed me the “tech graveyard” that has been apparently going on for some time now – various devices that have been broken by our newest family member.
They Sure Love Tech, Don’t They?
It’s amazing seeing little kids play with tech and immediately understanding how to use it.
There’s healthy debate on whether we should introduce tech to kids when they’re young age. Some say there’s little benefit while others think it’s a revolution in early-age education.
I’m in the camp saying it’s beneficial.
Tablets, phones, and desktops are tools, after all, so it’s what the parents make of them.
There are hundreds of edutainment apps and services to encourage learning and developing coordination. You see them play with these apps and it’s intuitive – it just clicks – and they’re both having fun and interacting versus just plopping them in front of the tube.
The Woes, Though
Broken screens and devices, that’s the problem.
Especially when they cost a couple hundred dollars.
There are tech-items dedicated for kids that are durable and restrict a lot of features. But, that would mean buying a new device when you already have one. Most of us would just let the kids play with an old phone or tablet so it at least has a use.
There are a few ways to make sure you keep the items protected:
- Cases – A good case and screen will help when these little ones decide to see how far they can fly across the room. We found some good iPhone 8 plus cases that were rubberized so they’d bounce a bit on the tile floor. For like $40 you protect the phone from the kid and yourself.
- Parental Controls – These are handy built-in features and profile management apps that will lock down the phone so the kid won’t accidentally access parts they shouldn’t. The areas of the phone that could cause them to (cough, cough) buy stuff online or erase important data.
- Monitoring – It goes without saying that you should probably keep an eye on the kid if they’re running around with an expensive piece of tech. Or, if they’re a little older, you’re knowing what they’re looking at online. This one’s all on you.
It’s not the end of the world if they end up cracking the screen or bricking the device. It’s not fun in any way but kids are kids. What did you expect when you let them play with it?
Where did that Thing Go?!
The little ones have this incredible ability to lose our items – hide & seek masters of our stuff.
Luckily, if it’s our phones there are device trackers with iPhones and in Android. The built-in iPhone ‘Find My iPhone’ app will help ping where it’s at if you’ve rummaged all throughout the house. The Android Device Manager app is similar but for Android.
Otherwise (and this goes for items like remotes) you can use TileTracker or Trackr that sticks to the item and lets you ping it with your phone. It sounds kind of silly but it sure beats digging around the place.
Got Your Own Funny Story?
We all got funny stories about the little ones and tech – share yours with a comment below!