Raising a Smart and Happy Child

leerlo en espanolModern technology has become an important part of life. Many young children know how to use an iPad, mobile device, and computer better than some adults! Parents find the child’s interest in technology useful and may be allowing access to these devices more than is developmentally appropriate.

The American Academy of Pediatrics and the Canadian Society of Pediatrics state infants aged 0-2 years should not have any exposure to technology, 3-5 years be restricted to one hour per day, and 6-18 years restricted to 2 hours per day. You may wonder; why is there concern over the exposure to technology?

girl at computer

Between 0 and 2 years, infant’s brains triple in size and continue in a state of rapid development to 21 years of age. Early brain development is determined by environmental stimulation (or the lack of stimulation) where interconnections of neurons are made. These interconnections determine the speed and depth of learning. Stimulation that promotes learning and lays the foundation for successful development comes from human connections, touch, movement and nature. The use and attachment to technology is sedentary and promotes isolation.

To raise a smart and happy child substitute technology time with play time that provides interaction and engagement.

Tips for Raising a Smart and Happy Child

  • Take time to talk and surround the child with language. It promotes attachment, builds self-esteem, increase language skills and is crucial to development.
  • Read to your child. Reading remains the key to learning.
  • Play with your child. Play is essential for achieving developmental milestones, emotional wellness, builds resilience and helps manage stress.
  • Teach simple games. A child develops memory and focused attention. Games also teach important social skills like taking turns, waiting and sharing as she/he interacts with others.
  • Go outside and move. Nature encourages exploration, stimulation, curiosity and problem solving. Skill necessary to learning and development.

Do you want to learn more? Contact the Mid-Hudson Early Childhood Direction Center at 845-565-1162 extension 209.