Children are great imitators. It is the reason why it is always better for parents, guardians or people in authorities to model good behavior than preaching them. But in today’s modern world, young kids are exposed to an insane amount of technology in their lives. From the moment they wake up, they have to deal with numerous tech gadgets at home. The list even grows when they start going to school. They begin using some software very early. These tech gadgets have a big role in shaping how a child turns out to be without us knowing especially when it comes to important developmental stages they need to go through as they grow.
Kids these days can’t relate to the struggle older people had when they had to trudge school without the help of the World Wide Web especially when doing assignments or research. You actually had to look for reference books in the library that are just as complex as the topic you are looking for. But this tech shortcut of today is actually messing with student’s brain, bypassing important cognitive processes necessary for learning. Yet still, we can’t deny how much easier and more comfortable life has become now that we have these smart gadgets to do most of the work and thinking for us. Even kids today have their own smartphones with them like most adults do. Despite this apparent necessity in owning smart gadgets, it isn’t entirely a must for them to own expensive brands, though, just as long as it does the work for them since basically, they are still students that aren’t yet earning their own keep.
As secondary schools open their doors once again, parents face the task of equipping their children for the next phase of their education and their lives. As well as books, bags and biros, tech tools increasingly play a role.
- The iPad or laptop
While some secondary schools have designated iPad plans, many don’t. Yet students will likely need access to a computer for extra research or to prepare projects. A good basic laptop is Lenovo’s Ideapad 110 (€379 from Argos). Apple MacBooks are far more expensive, starting at more than €1,000, although both Apple and Microsoft offer student discounts or around €100 off their MacBooks and Surface Laptops. While iPads make good computers, they come with a specific risk for students in that they’re compatible for most of the social media work used obsessively by students. That means the potential for significant distraction during study periods at home.
Technology may be helpful for students to accomplish so many things at once but it also means that they face a lot of distractions. A simple Google search can leave them hanging out in the wrong window for hours because they have been distracted by social media. Hence, it is a must to monitor what kids do and how much screen time they spend each day to ensure they don’t spend more hours on the web than needed.
At a management class in a city college, the faculty asks students to do a ‘pecha kucha’ presentation. The students respond, ‘What is it?’. The faculty replies, ‘Google’.
In no time, the students searched online and as they lunged forward to answer, the faculty asked two among the students to move to the front to explain it to the rest of the class. In the next two minutes, the entire class got to know what the presentation was and in the next few minutes thereafter, the students had their own ideas.
The college students would do a ‘pecha kucha’ presentation next week.
This would not have been possible if the students had not used gadgets – mobile phones, tablet computing devices or laptops – in the class.
Also, most classes nowadays demand the use of gadgets one way or another. It is inevitable considering how widespread the Internet of Things has become and we all became slaves to it. Classes often require students to do a lot of research that mainly involves the use of the web, so student’s need to have a smart gadget and access to the Internet in order to do that (which isn’t a problem these days are there is a wide variety of smart gadgets to choose from and public WiFi connections are almost everywhere around you). Students actually benefit from these tech innovations as long as they are put to good use and not for merely socializing.