“5 reasons we don’t give our kids the iPad” is in collaboration with Top Trumps.
As a wide-eyed expectant mum a few years ago, I made decisions on how I would parent my children before they were even born. Thinking we had it all figured out, my husband and I came up with some pretty strict rules on what we would and wouldn’t do in raising our kids.
Of course, over the years some of our ideals have changed and waned but there are some decisions that we have stuck to and have benefited our family life. For example, we don’t give our kids our iPhones or iPad.
However, when we moved back to Australia from the UK and my daughter was 2 years old, we bought an iPad with the intention of letting her use it on the long plane journey to give her something to do. In the end, it was at the bottom of one of the bags and impossible to reach out but she occupied herself with so many other things during that journey that I realised it had been a wasted purchase. It ended up being a blessing as we had no idea how we were going to take the iPad away again after we arrived!
I certainly don’t judge other parents who choose to give their kids the iPad – sometimes it’s about survival! That said, I just believe it doesn’t benefit our family to do so.
Here are the 5 reasons we don’t give our kids the iPad:
1. They’re too young
At 1 and 3 years old, I think they’re too young to be sitting indoors and playing on a device. They have so many years ahead of them when they’ll be studying or researching to sit at any kind of device or computer and at this age, we would prefer they were more active.
Even on colder days when we can’t play outside, they occupy themselves with drawing, colouring, baking or just running around the house instead!
2. We prefer to interact as a family
My favourite childhood memories were playing games as a family with my parents and older brother. I grew up in the UK and in winter especially, the nights are cold and dark and not conducive to outdoor play all of the time so we played games inside such as card games like Top Trumps.
I loved the ritual of us sitting around the dinner table together, playing a game as a family, laughing lots and enjoying time together. We were away from the TV and learning while we played.
This is definitely a tradition I will be passing on to my little family too.
3. We don’t believe in too much screen time
Whether it’s an iPad, iPhone or TV, we try and restrict the amount of time that the kids are sitting in front of a screen. Let’s be honest too, if we were to introduce the iPad to them now, they would want it all the time! Not giving it to them at all keeps things a little simpler.
4. They would fight over it
At the age my kids are, ‘sharing’ is already a challenge and one we’re introducing them to more and more every day. However, they are only now learning to share cuddles with us or time sitting on our laps so throwing an iPad in the mix isn’t going to help us out!
5. They would probably break it!
My kids are pretty well behaved but at their age it’s just inevitable that things get knocked over or broken and the iPad would either end up shattered on our tiled floor or taking a bath in milk – it just isn’t worth the risk.
We will introduce the iPad to them in an educational way when they’re at the appropriate age.
For now though, I treasure our unplugged family activities together and letting the kids use their imaginations to find things to do and have fun.
Do you give your kids the iPad?
What age do you think it’s appropriate to do so?
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