With all the talk about the dangers of too much screen time, it can be hard to know if a tablet is the right choice for your kid. And is an iPad for kids even safe? If you’re wondering if you should get your kid a tablet this holiday season, here are key pros and cons to help you make the decision.
As you decide if you should get your kid an iPad, one of the first things to do is to think about why you’re considering it and how you envision it being used.
Perhaps you’re looking for an easy-to-transport distraction for long car rides. Maybe you’re interested in educational apps for their enrichment potential. Or maybe you’re keen to make sure your child keeps up with their tech-savvy peers.
Identifying your motivation for getting a tablet for kids can help frame your decision as you weigh the pros and cons.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends no devices for children younger than two, with the exception of video chatting. Even if your child is old enough, that doesn’t necessarily mean an iPad is right for them.
Here are some questions to ask yourself aside from age:
While it’s always a good idea to maintain some level of supervision over your child’s iPad time, parental controls are an excellent compliment to your watchful eye. This guide from Apple gives step-by-step instructions for setting up parental controls.
Here are the main parental controls to look for:
You can also use a parental monitoring app, such as BrightCanary, to supervise your child’s browsing habits. BrightCanary uses advanced AI to monitor your child’s Google, YouTube, social media, and text message activity, and you’ll get an alert if your child encounters anything problematic.
It’s best to set rules around iPad use from the very beginning. Be clear with your child about expectations and if there are consequences for not following them.
The rules you set will depend on what’s right for your family, but here are some to consider:
Once you’ve established your family’s rules around iPad use, consider writing it into a digital device contract.
It’s important that parents consider both the pros and the cons before getting their child an iPad and establish clear expectations around its use. A tablet is a connected device, and as such, it can expose your child to the entire world of the internet. Parental control settings and monitoring apps can help give you peace of mind — and set a safety net for your child’s online experience. Stay connected to your child’s online activity with BrightCanary monitoring. You’ll be able to monitor their YouTube searches and posts, Google searches, and more, directly from your phone. Download the app today and start your free trial.