Just as you would monitor the time your pre school child watches television, the same guidance applies to children’s computer time.
The best rule of thumb is little and often. We recommend your child spends no longer than 20 minutes at the computer per day and that young children should always be supervised when playing on the computer.
If your child is having Click IT! lessons they will be learning the necessary mouse/trackpad skills in order for them to access the activities and work independently. If your child hasn’t used a computer before it’s essential that you sit with them supporting their learning, as there may be some activities that they will not be able to do without help. This could lead to a child becoming frustrated and losing interest.
Many parents ask us if their child is too young to use a computer. The answer depends on the child and whether they have the interest and the patience to play/work on the computer. By 2 years of age, they will enjoy using the computer as a fun activity with their parent. By age 3 they will be learning the cause and effect relationship of the mouse and will start to understand that by moving the mouse they are making something happen on the screen. By age 4, having learnt all these skills they will be much more independent and will need less adult assistance. Having said this, we would recommend that the computer/laptop is situated in a public room in the house so that you can be around to keep a close eye on what they are doing.
To download a full copy of this article written by Wendy Petersen, please click here.