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How technology is changing your child’s thinking

The amount of time children spend watching screens has risen dramatically, researchers have found.

They say children aged five to 16 spend an average of six and a half hours a day in front of a screen – compared with around two hours 10 years back. Additionally, they say the screen has changed – and say tablets are set to overtake TVs within two years making the scenario much gloomier in the years to come.

Yup, it’s 2016, when most preschoolers don’t know how to tie their shoelaces but they can understand—as if by osmosis—how to use the latest electronic gadget. Although we know that it’s essential for our kids to be able to navigate the byways of our wired world in order to excel at school and beyond, it’s hard not to be stunned by how technology seems to have taken over our lives.

What excess screen time is doing to your child?

You can think of the brain as something which uses attention as the gateway to thinking. Without it, other aspects of the brain, namely, perception, memory, language, learning, creativity, reasoning, problem-solving, and decision-making are greatly diminished or can’t occur at all. The ability of your children to learn to focus effectively and consistently lays the foundation for almost all aspects of their growth and is fundamental to their development into successful and happy people.

The advent of television altered that attention by offering children visual stimuli, fragmented attention, and little need for imagination. Then the Internet was invented and children were thrust into a vastly different environment in which, because distraction is the norm, consistent attention is impossible, imagination is unnecessary, and memory is inhibited.

What does all this mean for raising your children? The bottom line is that too much screen time and not enough other activities, such as reading, playing games, and good old unstructured and imaginative play, will result in your children having their brains wired in ways that may make them less, not more, prepared to thrive in this crazy new world of technology.

It’s time to think and enable your child to learn through play. The ball is in your court and you decide your child’s future. We at Culture Club, a preschool in Guwahati try & work towards a better tomorrow for kids through our innovative preschool & activities programme.

To learn more: See our website

PS: As a norm, kids shouldn’t be allowed more than two hours of screen time on a day to day basis. This includes television, tablets & phones.

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