Most parents came across the question “Does your child need a phone?” when buying the gadget for their kids. Children nowadays tend to learn using smart gadgets at an early age due to the emergence of the newest technology. This often makes a child think they need a phone to keep up with trends.
It is entirely normal for parents to have the desire to give everything they can to their children. No parent would be hesitant to do something they can for their kids. As long as they can, they will do everything to make things happen.
Most kids nowadays tend to ask for something they do not actually need. Children are still young, and several aspects of their lives are still developing. However, there are many things that kids want but are not essential for development.
An expert shares a list of things she believes children do not need in a Facebook post. The post went viral despite the age of the post. Plus, several parents agree with her top 1 entry where she talked about the need to buy a child a phone.
5 Unimportant Things That Kids Do Not Need Growing Up
Cindy Ketron has been a pediatric therapist for more than 30 years. Her three decades of experience in the job help her develop things that most kids have but don’t need.
She mentioned 10 things the kids do not need. In this article, we will only be focusing on the top 5 things she wrote:
Your Child Doesn’t Need a Phone During Early School Years
“Over the years, I cannot tell you one good thing that can come from this,” said pediatric therapist Cindy Ketron.
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Cellphones and other smart gadgets are one of the primary reasons why children get distracted studying. Experts found several adverse effects of using cellphone among kids while they are still young. Here are some:
- Distraction. Gadgets make it hard for children to focus on their academic duties.
- Failing to do homework. When kids are constantly on their phones at home, they are less likely to do or finish their tasks.
- Escape route. Students no longer go for the experience where they could learn a lot. They tend to go to their phone instead of asking for help or an explanation.
- No social life. Social life is essential to every student, especially the young ones. It teaches children how to interact with people.
Constant Use of Social Media
“[Very little] is healthy on social media for children,” said Cindy Ketron. “And it is getting worse.”
We associate this entry with questioning our child’s need to own a phone. Once they have a smartphone or other gadgets, they often fall for the temptation of creating social media accounts to connect with friends.
However, children’s unlimited access to social media negatively affects their health and development, especially when overused. This further proves why we need to consider the age of the child before buying a phone for them.
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It makes them prone to anxiety, depression, and psychological disorders. Aside from that, they may be susceptible to future health problems.
Moreover, constant exposure to social media may lead to mental problems during their teen years. If they develop an addiction to posting online, they might become vulnerable to threats on the internet.
Here are other negative impacts of social media on children:
- Kids may experience and be involved in cyberbullying.
- They may bump into inappropriate and harmful content that could affect their thinking.
- It could make children less productive.
- Excessive social media use could negatively affect their ability to develop interpersonal relationships.
Installing a TV in Their Room
According to Ms Ketron, “Rooms are for sleeping. Good sleep hygiene is a dying art for too many children.”
Experts believe having televisions in the bedroom may lead to isolation, less physical activity, and poor sleeping habits. It would be best for parents to limit their child’s screen time to two hours a day or even less.
Additionally, kids need to have at least one hour of exercise a day. Bedtime should come regularly, and they sleep between nine and eleven hours of sleep at night.
A study has found the four possible negative impacts of television on children.
- Children’s aggressive behaviour
- Racial and sex-role stereotypes
- Decreased interest in reading and school activities
- Poorer health habits and attitudes
Letting Them Spend Too Much Time Indoors
“Our kids have become hermits with social media and high-tech games,” said Cindy Ketron. “It is ruining their social skills. It’s also taking a toll on their physical well-being.”
In the last few decades, the best outdoor childhood experience vanished. It is because many childhood activities have moved indoors.
Additionally, strict COVID-19 restrictions affected the outdoor playtime of young kids. Because of this, the new generation of young children has become really fond of technology and indoor entertainment options.
Concerning this, experts found that spending too much time indoors can be disadvantageous to a child’s body and mind. With the easing of COVID-19 protocols, we encourage you to spend more time outdoors with your kids. Below are some negative effects of spending too much time indoors:
- Obesity. The number of overweight children is continuously increasing. One of the primary reasons why is less outdoor play among young children.
- Mental health issues. Spending too much time indoors causes an adverse effect on our children’s stress. Moreover, it causes them to lose confidence in meeting new people in person.
Taking time to go outdoor could help kids develop skills for the future. It could allow them to explore the world around them.
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Giving in to Their Demands
“Children who get to always choose where to eat, where to play, and what the family does end up being brats,” stated Ms Ketron.
As parents, we often find it hard to say no to our kids’ wishes. We usually give in to their demands to prevent tantrums or fights in public.
Unfortunately, this leads most of us into spoiling our children. The more pampered they are, the more likely they are to become brats.
To prevent the development of bratty behaviour, we must learn to say no. When our kids ask for something, we need to teach them to know if it’s essential to them or not. Below are some tips on teaching our kids about buying things:
- Teach them to spend their allowance wisely.
- Encourage them to save extra money from their allowance.
- Limit giving them extravagant gifts or toys. We suggest you stick to birthdays or special holidays when giving your children new stuff.
- Convince them to follow a budget. You can use this tactic when out at the mall with family. With this, they can learn to save not just their money, but also yours.
This article has been republished with the permission of theAsianparent Singapore.