Good Reasons to Get Your Kid an iPad
The Ultimate Device for Children
Admit it. You would do anything for your children, as long as it is for their own good. Sometimes, they will not understand or appreciate what you are doing, but at the end of the day, what you do is for their best interest.
When it comes to toys and gadgets, I think that the iPad is the best that you can give your children. While this is definitely a bone of contention for some people, I stick to my stand: there are many reasons the iPad is good for kids.
I will not turn a blind eye to the downsides of allowing children to get too attached to the iPad or spend too much time playing with it. It is very much the same when it comes to other toys anyway. However, I believe that the advantages far outweigh the disadvantages.
Are you with me? Read on to learn more about how the iPad is good for your kids. (Even if you don't agree, keep an open mind?)
The Original iPad Commercial
Why I Think the iPad Is Good for Kids
I have heard it said so many times that the iPad is the perfect device for your grandparents. It's easy to use. There is no need to walk them through the learning process. Well, maybe a little. It can be brought anyway. The list goes on and on.
The same can be said for children. The iPad is a great device for children to play with and learn from. Here are a few compelling reasons I think the iPad is good for kids.
Kids are going to grow up with amazing technology.
It's the stuff that was in science fiction when we were young. While only used to dream about tablets and swiping on the screen to play games, read, and draw, today's children have that in front of them. In the future - not so far off, actually - technology is going to be all around them, enveloping them. I believe that we might as well equip them to face that future. (This is not to say that I don't believe in paper books and other non-technological activities, but that's not the point of this lens.)
The iPad can easily replace TV.
My parents were firm believers in books and the love of reading. As such, my sister and I grew up with no television at home.
The result? We were always left behind in school when it came to the kids talking about the latest episode of this cartoon or that TV series. We had to go to our cousin's house to watch TV during the weekend. That was inconvenient, but you know what? We read. A LOT. And that resulted in more benefits that I can count.
Today, reading and books still play a huge role in the development of a child. However, I don't think it's wise to totally shun technology. While TV may be less controllable, there are many other options which will not leave your children devoid of necessary learning experiences.
Enter the iPad.
The device can be used to watch videos - the "good" kind, of course. It can be used to read books. It even goes one step further by providing the interactive experience.
The iPad can definitely replace the TV, and even better, you can monitor what your child does with it.
The iPad helps develop fine motor skills.
I've been told this reason is stretching things a little too far, but have you seen little kids use the iPad? My nephew just turned one a couple of months ago, and the way he uses the iPad amazes me! I do not think my fine motor skills were at that level when I was two years old! (Or maybe I was a late bloomer.)
Seriously, though, the way the iPad is used encourages the development of those skills. Swiping and tapping using various degrees of movement - that definitely helps. It is worthy to note, however, that the kinds of apps the kids use have a lot to do with this particular advantage.
The iPad is an engaging learning tool.
Again, this all boils down to the apps that your kids use. The good news is that there is no shortage of educational iPad apps. In fact, there might be a surplus, so you need to filter the apps that you download and allow the kids to play with. From alphabet learning apps to bedtime story apps to animal sounds apps to math apps to word games to logic games - there really is a lot out there, and the iPad makes learning a lot more fun.
The iPad stimulates creativity.
The same thing can be said about books and other activities, but with the right apps, the iPad can really bring out the creative side in your child. And you know what's even better? It helps your child know how to be alone.
Comparison of the iPad, iPad 2, and new iPad
Are you considering purchasing an iPad for your kids now? It is a simple matter, really, although if you are the kind who likes doing some legwork before making any purchase, this infographic might be of help.
The infographic gives some insight on the origins of the iPad as well as sales and usage statistics. Additionally, you can take a look at the side by side comparison of the three versions of the iPad. From price range to features, you will have the necessary information to make smart choice.
Image via Applegazette.com
iPad-related Items on Amazon
What Others Think About the iPad and Kids
My opinions are my own, of course, but I have also read what others have to say about the iPad being good - or bad - for children. Here is a handful of articles which I think are the best on this topic.
Why iPad Is the 'Children's Toy of the Year' by Mike Elgan of Computerworld was written in 2010, but I think the concepts very much apply today. He pretty much highlights the fact that the iPad is natural for children, which is the first reason I listed earlier.
Is the iPad A Good Investment for Your Child with LD? presents the idea that the iPad can be a useful tool for kids with learning disabilities. The article is nicely balanced, noting that the iPad is not a one-size-fits-all solution.
5 Reasons Why iPad Is Good For Kids! highlights the fun factor that the iPad brings. I do like the fun part, but I think there is more to the iPad than that.
A Special Note: The iPad for Kids With Special Needs
This topic is close to my heart. You know, I have always been partial to Apple products, even back when I couldn't afford even the cheapest one. Especially back then, perhaps.
When I saw how my nephew, who is now seven years old and has Prader-Wili Syndrome, reacted to having an iPad, my belief in the iPad just got reinforced.
I am not alone in thinking that the iPad is a device that can help children with special needs. Whether a child has cannot speak, has difficulty expressing himself, or has behavioral issues, it does not matter. There are many people who care about them, enough to create apps that are targeted at helping them overcome, or at least deal with, their condition.
Additionally, even the "generic" children's apps are helpful as well. Interactive storybooks are rather effective in getting the attention of kids - special or not.
Here's a nice video that will give you an idea how the iPad can be used by special kids.