Jan 26, 2011

Don't Tweet Me On This.

Here is the statistic:

19% of children between the ages of 2-5 can operate smart phone apps.

9% can tie their shoes.

Am I shocked at this? Yes. But only because I can barely operate smart phone apps. Not because I am one of those mothers who am going to raise my children like we live on Little House, because we don't. And I ask you, are you doing them any favors by making them pump their own water? Seriously?

Besides, I have an iPad. I got one for Christmas. Three days after having it my daughter showed me where the volume button was and how to turn the dadgum thing off.

She can't tie her shoes.

My son knows how to touch the app to come on. He knows how to drag the pictures and he knows how to quit a game when he's tired of it.

He just learned how to run without falling down.

What is wrong with this picture? Or is there anything wrong with it? Is our fear that technology is going to take over our world really going to stop technology from taking over our world? No. I do feel like, however, that we can do something about it taking over our home.

Last year the AG and I had the brilliant, positively ingenious, idea to write a list of resolutions down FOR EACH OTHER. (Hello? Divorce Attorney, line 1.) So we tried it and to some degree, a very tiny small degree, it worked. Granted, nothing he asked me to do have I done - but I did ask him to not open his laptop until our children are tucked away and asleep at night. When daddy comes home from work I want him to be home. from. work. I want the kids to know they are top priority. And by cracky, if the man didn't do it! For I would wager 360 out of 365 days the laptop never even came out of his briefcase until the kids were asleep and he had spent some time with me. Oh sure, there were the occasional fires to put out - but more times than not - when he came home, he was all ours.

Now, that I could do the same. Sometimes the iPad takes up more time than reading to them or playing with them. My greatest fear is that my daughter will go to register for wedding gifts someday and she'll register only at Comp USA because she has no idea what a vacuum is.

The Today Show told the story of a family that went on a technology fast. Throughout the day they could have their computers or cell phones, even their Nintendo DSi's. But come the afternoon when they were all home together it was board games and puzzles, reading books and taking walks together. Their fast lasted five days. Five days! Chances are, they mutually decided to end the fast by tweeting it to each other.

It makes me think about our homes today. I spoke with someone the other day who doesn't have email or even Internet connection at their home. And I wonder just how practical that is. But hey, if it works for them...

But trying to teach Remi and Rocco to grow corn and carry their books to school in a leather strap might not be the route we need to go. I don't care if the play their DS as long as it never takes precedence over the Word. Who cares if they quote Shrek and Donkey, as long as they can also quote Scripture. And on that note, I better go. Because I have much - much - MUCH - work to do with them. Perhaps I should start texting them a scripture every day? You're right. Let's first teach them to tie their shoes and run in place.

What is it like at your house?


Andi said...

We just got a Wii for Christmas. My husband is addicted...

My kids are only allowed 30 minutes/day of electronics, be it computer or games.

They only get 1 hour of tv. Unless it's a movie, and then it's just silly to make them turn it off.

I spend entirely too much time on my computer.

The end.

ugagirl30 said...

It has taken over. Completely. We do have sit down family dinners at the table on the nights I don't have school. TV has to be off, no other electronics allowed. But that does give us a chance to talk to one another and find out how the day went.

Hot Tub Lizzy said...

I actually get concerned about kids who grow up in technology free houses, because I can tell you that these days it's expected when a kid starts school that they will know how to operate a computer. Their futures are going to be ALL about computers, and the more they know, the better off they'll be. I'm not advocating doing away with all family time - it's like everything else - all things in moderation.

Dysfunctional Mom said...

I just think it's all about common sense. Let them play their electronic games AND teach them to tie their shoes, for the love of God. It doesn't have to be one or the other. The kid doesn't have to go around with his head stuck in his gameboy, tripping over his shoelaces. My kids have Wii and handheld games and the computer, and often choose to play outside. They also participate in sports and 4H. My daughter loves to read (actual books). It's all about balance and again, good old common sense.

Laurie said...

I agress with Hot Tub Lizzy and Dysfunctional Mom. I hve a 14 year old and an 11 year old. The 14 year old has a phone the 11 year old doesnot. The only reason teh 14 year old does is so she can call us when she's coming in from school acitivites so we'll know when to go get her. But oftentimes, she forgets her phone at home and uses someone else's! Her phone also shuts off at 9 each night. Both girls have laptops. Both are pretty good at following her hosue rules for computers-probably because they know we WILL confiscate them. We know all their passwords, etc. And we TALK about what they are looking at on the computer! My husband is a supt of schools and is a big believer in technology. He is always teling me that the girls are technological natives. ANd that he and I are not. Maybe that's why kids can do all the apps but not tie their shoes. I don't know. I just know that keeping things like technology and sugar completely away from your kids often backfires. You have to TEACH kids limits and self control. Yep it's hard, adn often painful, but it is NECESSARY!

Bethany said...

It's crazy to think how fast technology advances these days. I babysit a two year old. He can turn on an iPad, get the app he wants, play it, etc...so nutty.

I was raised in a home where we didn't have cable and no internet until about 10 years ago. We played outside, a lot. We played house, and school, and read...when I have kids, I'd love for it to be the same for them, although I know that's asking a lot these days! It's sad that family only made it 5 days-- and you said they could use the technology during the day?!