As the saying goes, catch them young. Buying holiday gifts for the kids can be quite a challenging task sometimes, but as long as we put a lot of thought and love into their gifts, they should appreciate the gifts that they receive. While parents all over the world worry about kids constantly glued onto smartphones, tablets and even TV, there are some enlightened parents, according to this link, who are gifting their 5-year-olds smartphones this Christmas. In a place called Victoria in Australia, 31% moms and dads are planning to put smartphones under the Christmas tree for their kids.
A survey commissioned by Telstra, a leading Australian mobile phone provider, has revealed that, aside from the 31% who have decided to give their kids smartphones this Christmas, around 50% admit that they may have to give in to the pressure put on their kids by their peers – all the kids these days seem to have smartphones so it puts extra pressure on the kids who don’t have smartphones. 52% parents feel that kids are safer when they have a smartphone with them, although there is an increasing concern for kids continuously accessing the Internet and spending too much time playing with the smartphones. 650 parents were questioned for the survey.
Whether kids should have smartphones or not is a ship that has long sailed and almost every kid these days is expected to have his or her own smartphone. The question now is, what is the appropriate age for a kid to have a smartphone? Although many 5-year-olds might be getting smartphone this Christmas, experts say that the appropriate age for a kid to have a smartphone is around 10. In fact, parents should hold back as much as they can. If the kid doesn’t show any interest in a smartphone, then he or she shouldn’t be offered one and in fact, this should be seen as a blessing rather than a peculiarity.
There is no escaping from smartphones and tablets and they have almost become an integral part of our everyday lives. But kids shouldn’t be left with smartphones unsupervised. Parental controls should be there. Rules must be set up in the household about for how long smartphones can be used. Preferably, smartphones should be handed over to the kids when they are leaving the house and they need to keep in touch. They shouldn’t spend too much time with their smartphones at home and they should develop this habit from younger age itself. Parents should control passwords to email accounts and the kids’ phones should not have bank accounts set up in them. More importantly, small kids shouldn’t get addicted to their smartphones – a menace that is growing at an alarming rate.