Image: Belinda Hankins Miller via Flickr
Recently Sandra Foyt of TechMamas asked:
Here's what I said: We have a seven year old son and each of the three people in our little family has his/her own laptop. (My school has a rotating upgrade budget for computers, and when old ones get "decommissioned," they're put up for auction within the school community. His is "old," but it works!)
How are you sharing your love of technology with your child(ren)?
We all have limitations on our media time, but we allow our young gentleman some say over how his gets used. At this point, videos still win over computer time most of the time, although he will occasionally "burn" his entire day's allotment (30 minutes, more on rainy weekends) on a fierce round of Desktop Tower Defense.
I try to be transparent about what I'm doing on the computer... he knows that I use it to blog, pay bills, do research, edit photos, write email, etc. We have pay-as-you-go cellphones, and have explained to him why paying monthly fee for more fully-featured, state-of-the-art phones is not a priority for us at this time. He also understands that we consider hand-held games to be potentially socially isolating.
Online videos have turned into a major source of laughs and inspiration. (Our son watched 5th grader Dalton Sherman's inspirational speech in TX three times in a row one day earlier this month.) Our television viewing has dwindled and is probably about 90% sports. Our son understands that his grandparents (and other friends/fans!) sometimes know what's going on in our lives via my blog. He knows that if there's a "master" of something in the world, we can probably use the computer to access that information.
And this last has meant that he's already learned things I would NEVER have dreamed of teaching him on my own. Like this. Helping him figure out how best to appropriately navigate cyberspace will be a long-term project, and one of us will always be there to help: all computing in our home takes place in public spaces.
It's an interesting time to be a parent, isn't it? How are you sharing your love of technology - or lack of same - with the people in your life?