After dinner this evening, my daughter came up behind me at my desk and gently peeked her head around my shoulder to see what I was doing.
“Mommy, you know what?” (As she so often inquires these days:).
Yup! She knows what a Content Creator is…
“When can I start my YouTube Channel?”, was the response I got. This of course led into a lengthy conversation with my little future Content Creator about the niches she planned to cover, what she had planned for her online store and what she wanted her video content to be about. I was so very proud of my little ‘digital entrepreneur’ in the making!
This brought me to thinking about this next generation of ours and the impact that technology has already and will most definitely play in their (and our) future…
Here is my daughter at age 5, in 2016, asking me about YouTube and already capable of navigating herself through most of the electronics in our house.
I have always been moderate with our digital time but felt it also very important that my child be computer literate growing up in the time that she is.
When I was five, about 30 years ago, people weren’t walking around with cellphones, let alone SMART phones. Phones were connected to the wall. Ya, you heard me… THE WALL! Remember those days?
Netflix? No such luck! I swear that was a funny noise that came out of my dog once when he sneezed…
Seriously though… there were still mostly black and white TV’s around when I was a child and there sure as heck was not a TV in almost ever house, let alone in most of the rooms of those houses.
Technology? We had two channels growing up, on a black and white TV, and that was only if reception was good for the half hour that your favorite show was on.
We were (often gently forced) to find our entertainment outdoors as children. It was in these childhood adventures, in the mud puddles, in the make-believe… I truly found who I was going to be. I had no idea of this at this time, but looking back, I knew who and what I wanted to be when I was five! Honestly, deep down… It hasn’t changed!
I do my best to abide by this theory with my own family. My daughter has been taught from a very early age to explore the environment and about how delicate this place that we live, really is. She loves to read, to draw, to colour, to create… Now, give the kid a computer and BAM! She’s all over it. I cannot figure out how it happened really, it was almost like a natural instinct simply took over.
Tap this, zip that over there, close this up, an on her way… and “Oh, look…” somehow, she managed to even cast in onto our TV… That isn’t a Smart TV.
I don’t even know how to do that!
Like most every parent, I want to give my child the opportunity to be whatever it is that she wants to be, whether it be a Paleontologist, a doctor, or the next viral YouTube sensation (I would prefer the earlier to the later of course) as my daughter has decided.
This brings me to the now, what will the future have in store for these young folks?
What should we be preparing our children for? What skills will they benefit the most from? Should we be limiting our children’s digitally interactions until later ages?
I, by no means, think that children should be submersed in technology and digital goods at a young age, however I do think our children will only benefit from ‘learning’ about this digital world!
What are your thoughts on screen time and the effects technology has on your kids?
Feel free to share your comments below!