With September right around the corner, it’s about time for the dreaded back to school shop. Gone are the days of just buying a new set of pens and uniform though! Nowadays a lot of school work is done on computers or other modern technology, and it’s obviously important to support your children by providing them with the equipment and tools that they need.
With around 70% of children already confident in using a laptop, tablet or smart phone, these tools seem to becoming a necessity in the classroom, and at home. However, there are so many different options to choose from now, it’s hard to know what are the real, ‘must have’ gadgets and tech to keep your kids happy and developing.
There are so many apps available now that it’s hard to keep track of what’s what between Angry Birds, Minecraft and whatever other game is the newest fad! However, there are some apps that can keep kids busy, and educate them too.
From apps like Zap Zap Math, designed to help primary age children develop their mathematical skills, to Wet-Dry-Try, an app to help practice handwriting, there are so many apps created with kids in mind. Screens seem to be a lot more attractive to kids than books nowadays, so these apps can be a fun alternative to pen and paper!
A lot of parents share their tablets, laptops or smart phones with their kids, allowing them to play games, watch cartoons or chat with their friends. While this is certainly not unusual these days, it’s important that kids also get to experience the outdoors and stay active.
A recently released app by the name of Pokémon Go has taken the world by storm, getting people of all ages off the couch and outside, in search of digital monsters. The app, which is freely available on iPhone and Android phones, encourages ‘Pokémon trainers’ to hunt down elusive Pokémon in the real world around them, through clever use of GPS tracking.
While there are some concerns surrounding the safety of people walking around paying more attention to their phones’ screens, it’s a great, free opportunity to spend time outdoors with your kids, and offers numerous health benefits!
Ensuring online safety
Almost any parent you ask will worry about what their children are doing online. It’s important to keep a close eye on their activity, and talk to them about their safety and wellbeing online. What may seem obvious, or downright scary to us, may seem perfectly innocent to a child.
While their child’s online safety is easily every parent’s number one priority, it’s also prudent to make sure that your gadgets themselves are kept secure. Flashy ads offering free iPads or goodies are everywhere online, and are understandably attractive to the more naïve user, but there can be nasty viruses lurking behind them.
Downloading a trusted, paid-for anti-virus program is a great idea for any tablet, smartphone or laptop that’s going to be frequently used. One of the most highly recommended products is Norton AntiVirus, a multi-device program that can prevent nasty computer infections. While it may seem a bit pricy, especially when compared to some free anti-viruses that are available, it’s worth every penny.
Keeping up to date
It’s so hard trying to keep up with the latest cool gadget that all of the kids want. There’s no feeling like investing in a new laptop or tablet, only to find out that a better one is coming out the following week!
The key to being confident in what you’re buying is to do your research, and think about the future as well as the present. Like with any purchase, you need to ask yourself ‘will this last?’ Technology is the biggest culprit here, so it is very important to be savvy about your purchase.
Buying suitable tech for your kids can be very overwhelming, especially given the price tags on some items, but there are ways to cut costs. It’s very easy to find websites that will offer discount voucher codes, allowing you to save money at certain vendors.