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Mom Confessions Mom Confessions

electronics make my kids dumb....

Posted by Anonymous   + Show Post

We NEVER let the kids get in on our tablets, or more than one episode on TV per week, or the computer (even though my son's first grade teacher at school encourages my son to do about 45 minutes on two different programs once a week. I just won't. He's six.).

They sneak our tablets and cell phones ALL THE FREAKING TIME. Pisses me off. I catch them watching netflix on the tablet like, every day. Or playing a game on my/DH's phone. They don't have any age-appropriate electronics- like a Nintendo DS, or a V-tech or a Leap Frog. No. There is no "age appropriate" screen I am comfortable with. They can learn letters from a workbook, and anything else from me, or school.

My kids are 6, 5 and 3. I see mom's all the time talking about how they use video games and computer time as discipline- or encouragement to be better behaved, or allow them to play for a period of time after the important things are done. 

I let my boys play mario kart on the Wii the other day. I had TONS of school stuff and cleaning and organizing to do, and I thought- okay a few hours, so I can focus without them fighting. 

When it was time to stop for meals, for potty breaks, for ANYTHING... they screamed, threw tantrums, acted like fools and threw me a nasty attitude. Um, no.  Where are my kids?! What happened to order and sanity?!

Then, I told  them to bundle up and head outside. They literally SAT THERE for 30 minutes. They had no idea what to do. The day before, they spent the whole day imagining things, playing super heroes, jumping off ledges and chasing each other with the dogs. Today... nothing. They had like ZERO capacity for imaginative play.

And yes, I blame electronics. When more creative minds create a system that does the imagining FOR them, they'd rather sit in that little world, content to let someone else do the work, and be entertained.

Sorry... not my kids. I'm so mad at myself for letting them play as long as I did. And now the Tablets are going up high every time DH and I are not using them, my cell is staying ON MY PERSONS and the computer screen will be LOCKED when not in use. TV requires permission from BOTH parents, no movies, no TV... no way.

I refuse to have zombies with bad attitudes for children.

Posted by Anonymous on Jan. 11, 2013 at 12:47 PM
Replies (11-20):
Anonymous
by Anonymous - Original Poster on Jan. 11, 2013 at 1:06 PM

I'd be interested in seeing this "proof".

Cuz oddly enough, parents have been raising their kids without electronics for hundreds of years... it's not like it's some kind of weird, crazy idea.

Like i don't let them play at all? Is that what you're saying when you said "You don't let them play that often"? They play. They play with each other, toys, books, coloring, workbooks, chores etc.

The last time they watched a movie was.... my son watched "Avatar" two days ago because he got up REALLY early for some reason and since he wouldn't go back to sleep, we opted for quiet time. My daughter and preschooler watched "Cinderella" the day after Christmas... and as a family we watched "Dispicable me the weekend AFTER Christmas.

TV is either a family event, a constructive event, or a rare reward.

We opt for everything EXCEPT TV as long as possible.

Quoting jillbailey26:

It's been proven that moderate screen time with video games or handheld games can be beneficial.  

They threw tantrums and sneak it because you don't have boundaries set up for when they play.  It also seems like you don't let them play that often.

Mine play on the computer for one hour on Friday and another on Saturday.  They earn video game time through the week and they play for up to an hour (depending on grades and behavior) on Friday.  The boys have kindles.  They can play with apps (games) for an hour and reading is unlimited.  They can watch TV whenever they want, however long they want.  

They're not zombies, they CHOOSE to go outside and play.  They'll even stop in the middle of their video game time to go out and play.  And they rarely have bad attitudes.

To me, you're holding them back.  Especially in an age where everything is going digital.  They're your kids though.  It is funny that you blame the electronics though.  They're objects.  I can assure you that the blame is being focused on the wrong thing.


Anonymous
by Anonymous 4 on Jan. 11, 2013 at 1:06 PM
My kids have electronics and rarely play them. It's called monitoring and moderation. Doesn't mean they NEED them and it doesn't mean they can't have them. It something else to do when they get bored. I bought them iPods for Christmas and 3 ds's for bdays. They play the iPods in the car and rarely the Nintendo. It's not all that hard to monitor it.

Also, this is the reason they sneak it. My kids have never woken up and snuck anything or made a mess. I think you need to monitor them more closely.

Quoting Anonymous:

Did I say I was perfect? No... but I don't use electronics for them. They can play outside, play with the toys in the basement, read a book, write, color, play with play dough, create something with glue and scissors or do any number of helpful chores and things around the house. I'd much rather be chasing them around the house because they are getting into things, then let them zone out with an electronic item on my couch. The price of trying to keep track of them all day is worth it. I don't always suceed, but I'm not about to give up and squat them in front of a computer/TV all day.

Oddly enough, LOTS of parents for the last 100 years have been raising their kids without electronics. It's not a difficult concept. And I don't see it as a sign of perfection or fantastic parenting. I see it as common sense.

Ya.. they sneak it. At night when everyone is sleeping- or they'll get up earlier than us and grab it then. They never watch an entire movie or TV show before they get caught. I'd say... maybe 5 minutes in or less.

Netflix is really easy. You find the bright red app, touch it, and it opens up. They find what looks colorful and fun, and touch the screen again. SUPER complicated stuff here.


Quoting Anonymous:

You're so perfect yet your kids are alone long enough to sneak a tablet and watch a movie. Riiiight lady. They also know how to work them and get on Netflix....yet you never let them use them.


Anonymous
by Anonymous - Original Poster on Jan. 11, 2013 at 2:00 PM

Don't you think he could have learned that through a fun workbook with YOU though?And you guys could practice together, bond together, etc?

I mean, here's my thoughts: I can sit my kids in front of Dora the Explorer for WEEKS... and eventually, they might pick up on a few spanish words. That doesn't mean they are learning spanish because they used Dora. It's because reptition and the constant barage of Dora episodes eventually got them somewhere.

I found I could teach my children those same spanish words and phrases in a single day. It could take weeks for them to absorb the words and things in Dora because they're more interested in the story line, the colors, the activities the songs... not so much learning the words.

I think parents are using electronics to facilitate because it's far easier to use a little box with batteries to teach them things, than to do the research, seek out what you think they should know, figure out how to teach them in a way they will understand, and execute. Why not just hand them a v-tech and let them have at it? V-tech requires the purchase of a machine, and the purchase of a program. For $100 they could learn whatever the program wants them to learn, and you can sit back and watch.

I don't prefer that. I'd rather my kids learn from experiences, and interaction with peers, or myself. There's nothing that an electronic item can "teach" my kids that I can't teach them myself, if I take the time to do so. So if my daughter doesn't know how to read and write at three, and your son does, that's because I haven't taken the time to teach her. I'd RATHER that be on me. I'd rather take responsibility for their learning than brag that hours spent on an iPad is what made my kid smart... due to no effort on my part.


Quoting lilbit53009:

my son has his own iPad. he's 3.5 and can already read simple words because of the apps he plays with. but don't get me wrong he also watches Netflix and plays other games

he also loves to play dress up with his old halloween costumes, play with his train tracks, play basketball and baseball, and loves to go to the park and play. he takes all his action heros and pretends to fight with them and makes up different games.

we live in a world of electronics now. there's no stopping that. i wouldn't want to not let my son use something that he's going to have to learn how to use anyways. 

as long as there's a balance and he's not using it 24/7 i don't see an issue


lilbit53009
by on Jan. 11, 2013 at 2:08 PM

every child learns differently...my son gets more out of playing the games while learning because he likes games. i do homework (yes he has homework in preschool) with him everynight for an hour after we get home from school and work. so it's not me not teaching him.

while i don't rely fully on electronics to educate him. i'm not ignorant to the fact that they can help when used correctly and that they are MAJOR parts of life now a days whether you want to accept it or not.

but you do what works for your kids and i'll do what works for mine...all i know is my kid is going to kindergarden a year early so i can't be doing too much wrong. *shrug*

Quoting Anonymous:

Don't you think he could have learned that through a fun workbook with YOU though?And you guys could practice together, bond together, etc?

I mean, here's my thoughts: I can sit my kids in front of Dora the Explorer for WEEKS... and eventually, they might pick up on a few spanish words. That doesn't mean they are learning spanish because they used Dora. It's because reptition and the constant barage of Dora episodes eventually got them somewhere.

I found I could teach my children those same spanish words and phrases in a single day. It could take weeks for them to absorb the words and things in Dora because they're more interested in the story line, the colors, the activities the songs... not so much learning the words.

I think parents are using electronics to facilitate because it's far easier to use a little box with batteries to teach them things, than to do the research, seek out what you think they should know, figure out how to teach them in a way they will understand, and execute. Why not just hand them a v-tech and let them have at it? V-tech requires the purchase of a machine, and the purchase of a program. For $100 they could learn whatever the program wants them to learn, and you can sit back and watch.

I don't prefer that. I'd rather my kids learn from experiences, and interaction with peers, or myself. There's nothing that an electronic item can "teach" my kids that I can't teach them myself, if I take the time to do so. So if my daughter doesn't know how to read and write at three, and your son does, that's because I haven't taken the time to teach her. I'd RATHER that be on me. I'd rather take responsibility for their learning than brag that hours spent on an iPad is what made my kid smart... due to no effort on my part.


Quoting lilbit53009:

my son has his own iPad. he's 3.5 and can already read simple words because of the apps he plays with. but don't get me wrong he also watches Netflix and plays other games

he also loves to play dress up with his old halloween costumes, play with his train tracks, play basketball and baseball, and loves to go to the park and play. he takes all his action heros and pretends to fight with them and makes up different games.

we live in a world of electronics now. there's no stopping that. i wouldn't want to not let my son use something that he's going to have to learn how to use anyways. 

as long as there's a balance and he's not using it 24/7 i don't see an issue



coleysmama
by Gold Member on Jan. 11, 2013 at 2:17 PM

Sounds like discipline is your problem rather than electronics.

My 15 yr old son has always loooved electronics but still loves reading, camping, sports, school clubs,  etc. He is also an honor student with a 97.4 average. He would have never DARED to sneak things like your kids do.

Balance and discipline is what you need.

Anonymous
by Anonymous - Original Poster on Jan. 11, 2013 at 2:23 PM

Academically he might be ready but socially I wouldn't send your kid to kindy early. But that's a whole different debate. You should talk to your school about that. My son turned 5 nine days after the "cut off" for kindy. I had the option to send him anyway with a waiver, because academically he tested just fine for kindy. But after discussing it with the school they recommended we keep him in preschool longer. Because kids benefit from the time spent in a fun learning environment that implements structure in a fun way. Going straight to kindy as soon as possible can cause problems with adjustment.

And social interaction with kids who are older isn't so helpful either. They are developmentally different from him and he may not fit in. I went to kindy a year early too... and I've always been a super social person, but hanging with older kids in elementary school was always a problem. Anyway... and I say this not because I wanna argue it with you- but because really... you should look into it. If your son seems to be ready even after you've researched and discussed and whatnot, go for it. But just be aware. One mom to another- I'd hate to see your son suffer socially so he can be challenged academically. There are ways to get the best of both worlds!

Electronics are only a major part of people's lives because they've adapted the mentality that life can't be done without them. Or that things are far too complicated to do without them. Ya... it's harder to do it my way. And I fail more often than I'd like to admit. It's hard, sure. But I won't trade that for the sake of convenience and reliance on electronics. My kids don't NEED those things to learn. And they don't NEED those things for entertainment... so they don't have them. I don't see a purpose in a 1st grader, and two preschoolers loading up on electronics. Maybe when my kids are 5th graders and need to learn to type, or navigate a word document, or w/e. But not now. Not when they are so little and have so many other options. And I'd rather do it WITH them.

If he likes games, then why not make a game out of what you do together? Hit up a home-school website and see what they do to teach their kids fun stuff. You can do a makeshift "game" at home.

Quoting lilbit53009:

every child learns differently...my son gets more out of playing the games while learning because he likes games. i do homework (yes he has homework in preschool) with him everynight for an hour after we get home from school and work. so it's not me not teaching him.

while i don't rely fully on electronics to educate him. i'm not ignorant to the fact that they can help when used correctly and that they are MAJOR parts of life now a days whether you want to accept it or not.

but you do what works for your kids and i'll do what works for mine...all i know is my kid is going to kindergarden a year early so i can't be doing too much wrong. *shrug*

Quoting Anonymous:

Don't you think he could have learned that through a fun workbook with YOU though?And you guys could practice together, bond together, etc?

I mean, here's my thoughts: I can sit my kids in front of Dora the Explorer for WEEKS... and eventually, they might pick up on a few spanish words. That doesn't mean they are learning spanish because they used Dora. It's because reptition and the constant barage of Dora episodes eventually got them somewhere.

I found I could teach my children those same spanish words and phrases in a single day. It could take weeks for them to absorb the words and things in Dora because they're more interested in the story line, the colors, the activities the songs... not so much learning the words.

I think parents are using electronics to facilitate because it's far easier to use a little box with batteries to teach them things, than to do the research, seek out what you think they should know, figure out how to teach them in a way they will understand, and execute. Why not just hand them a v-tech and let them have at it? V-tech requires the purchase of a machine, and the purchase of a program. For $100 they could learn whatever the program wants them to learn, and you can sit back and watch.

I don't prefer that. I'd rather my kids learn from experiences, and interaction with peers, or myself. There's nothing that an electronic item can "teach" my kids that I can't teach them myself, if I take the time to do so. So if my daughter doesn't know how to read and write at three, and your son does, that's because I haven't taken the time to teach her. I'd RATHER that be on me. I'd rather take responsibility for their learning than brag that hours spent on an iPad is what made my kid smart... due to no effort on my part.


Quoting lilbit53009:

my son has his own iPad. he's 3.5 and can already read simple words because of the apps he plays with. but don't get me wrong he also watches Netflix and plays other games

he also loves to play dress up with his old halloween costumes, play with his train tracks, play basketball and baseball, and loves to go to the park and play. he takes all his action heros and pretends to fight with them and makes up different games.

we live in a world of electronics now. there's no stopping that. i wouldn't want to not let my son use something that he's going to have to learn how to use anyways. 

as long as there's a balance and he's not using it 24/7 i don't see an issue




Anonymous
by Anonymous - Original Poster on Jan. 11, 2013 at 2:34 PM

My children do just fine and are well disciplined when we focus on sleep schedules, healthy eating and other elements of their lives. I get regular accolades from parents who know us very well, as well as parents who see us in the park, grocery store, etc on how well behaved my children are. It's only when they've spent a snowy day watching movies/tv, or more than 30 minutes on a game/computer program etc that they start acting like crazies. So ya. I see a direct correlation between electronic time and behavior. If using electronics is going require an "adjustment period" or its own structure within the home, then why bother? There's nothing they can get from electronic items they can't get elsewhere. They are a fancy icing to the cake- not a necessity. So I'm not going to build a whole structure and process in my home for something they don't need. I have enough on my plate! Easier (and cheaper!) to just cut out the middle man.

It's not just ME. Psychological studies run electronic forms of learning and entertainment through the RINGER. Kids lack the ability to pay attention and listen to instruction after too much electronic interaction (a lot of speculation as to whether or not ADD and ADHD has been overdiagnosed based on the ratio of electronic interacton and inability to focus and stay on task). Kids lack imagination and creativity after prolonged interaction with electronics. This isn't some personal, exception to the rule thing. 1 out of 3 kids spends too much time using electronics. That tells me a lot. Esp when mom's get offended on here because you say that for YOU, electronics are a no-no. Sometimes we get angry when we get called out.

Have you read the featured post about a "no electronics for a day" idea? WOW! How many mom's are saying "hmmm... good idea!" or "I'll try that!" or "the weather has been to nasty to try that..."?? pages and pages of mom's who have never even considered a full day without some kind of electronic interaction for themselves, or their kids. That blows my mind!!

If you're interested, I'll post some academic research on here about the negative effects of electronics in children (particularly young children, since that's the age group of my kids). But I'm sure you can find some sources on your own. Look up pediatric journals and articles on the topic. It's eye opening.

Quoting coleysmama:

Sounds like discipline is your problem rather than electronics.

My 15 yr old son has always loooved electronics but still loves reading, camping, sports, school clubs,  etc. He is also an honor student with a 97.4 average. He would have never DARED to sneak things like your kids do.

Balance and discipline is what you need.


arpazia
by Platinum Member on Jan. 11, 2013 at 2:35 PM
Lol! I laughed sooo hard!!!
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
brettsmomma
by ~Tammie~ on Jan. 11, 2013 at 2:39 PM

 It up to the parent really. i allow my son to play online games mainly jumpstart.com which we pay a monthly fee for. He also has a DS and an xbox kinect. Out of all the games he prefers the learning games the most. He has a great imagination and has no problem putting his game down for some outside play time. Works for us. I personally feel he doesn't give me attitude about setting the games down because he knows he will be allowed to pick right back up after his scheduled activity is done.

Photo: -Randi.

bustybee
by Buzz Lightyear on Jan. 11, 2013 at 2:40 PM

for me, I feel it is how we as parents use the electronics with our kids.

my tv can be on kids shows all day and the kids (5 and 3) might watch 30 minutes if even that. they have toy laptops, a ds, an old real laptop of mine, dh's old cell phones, and other electronics. they collect more dust then their toys.

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