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Electronics for young children

Posted September 29, 2015 - 1:28pm

As an early childhood teacher I am noticing a trend in small motor skills being lower than normal. Cutting and writing skills are not as refined as they used to be. i am wondering if this is a result of children using iPads and electronics for entertainment instead of coloring and cutting. At what age did you allow your little one to play on tablets or phones?

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Your Kid's Table

As an OT, I totally agree! I allowed my kids at age one, but it was very infrequent and only because of older siblings. Even now my kids don't have access to the tablets regularly.


Guilty!  My kids probably use tablets too much but they also love crafts and do a lot of coloring...less cutting though because there have been a couple of haircut incidents! 

Mommy Ramblings

My kids school is very attentive to kids motor skills fine and gross and they have an OT on staff so I can say my kids were good we even had our older one get a little help from the school OT that came to the house when he was 3 and then to the preschool when he was 4 so they were good. He did not use a tablet at the time. Our kids got their own tablets when they were  4 and 6 I think it was.


This is why I was reluctant to let my kiddos use my devices. I'm old fashioned I'm sure, but those fine motor skills are important! Simply because of their age difference and when devices were available, my younger daughter used the iPad at a younger age. But she went to a preschool with no computers or devices (Montessori) so I feel like she had lots of practice on fine motor skills. She's one of the youngest in her kinder class and could write and read before she started so I think I made the right choices. She's my last kiddo - I'm not sure how I would treat devices if I had a younger one. They are useful and make mom-life easier...


Yes, they certainly make mom life easier!  There are some apps that are probably good for fine motor skills.  We have a writing app that let you practice writing your letters with your finger or a stylus.  I think they can be a really good tool as well as a lot of fun. 


I think we are getting to the point that kiddos are behind if they don't know how to use certain devices. So crazy. We didn't even use computers when I was in high school. I had typing class!


I guess pretty young, but my son's always had good motor skills. I don't think my daughter's ever been very craftsy, but neither have I.


I think there can be a healthier balance than what I am seeing as a trend. If children are coloring and cutting and painting or beading, then they are developing the muscles needed for writing. If they are just clicking a mouse or swiping a tablet then they are missing some crutial steps.

Frugal Minded M...

SO my youngest (3) had access to electronics at the youngest age of any of my kids since she has older siblings who have them.  Even with that she has been one of my most advanced with fine motor skills.  I think it might depend on the kids.  


I remember hearing that swinging on a swing was teaching motor skills. I don't see many kiddos outside. I seldom see anyone at the park when we go. It seems times change and maybe I'm not with the program. My kiddos use electronics (far more than I care to admit), but we try and balance things out. I also watch my two youngest (9 and 11) boy/girl. My son is a ninja with his scissors...he cuts fast and accurate. My daughter, the oldest, cuts slow and rather choppy.....

Frugal Minded M...

My kiddos love the swings in the backyard.  When they are outside, that's often where I find them.