The voice of Amanda

Parenting with your IPad

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I get that parents have their hands full. A lot of households have both parents working or single parent situations, limiting the time that can be dedicated to a preschooler. I truly do understand there are difficulties. I also understand wanting the best for your child.

My Preschool children are learning the alphabet and how to write and sound out what they see. I try to work with the many ways children learn, having them hear the different alphabet sounds, trace them, write them, roll them out with dough, etc. I’m always looking for fun new ways to get them excited about learning their letters (if you have ideas, please share!). I went looking for a letter writing app to broaden my letter writing spectrum. Not only is it another way of having them “see, say and write,” but I love cutting down on the amount of paper we use.

I ran across this review when searching letter writing apps. The app I found is free and fairly basic- it says the letter aloud, and the child can trace the dotted outline of each capital and lower case letter. Of course there are going to be other apps that have more options, but I feel that I don’t need something to do the teaching for me.

What makes me mad about this review is the clear desire for a piece of technology to do the job that a parent or teacher is supposed to do. Yes, there is no “good job!” Or “try again” feature. I find that a parent can do that when working WITH their child. I also mentioned that this is a free app, so for parents willing to pay a meager $2.99, there is surely something that will talk to your child more than you.

This review was not isolated. Numerous other parents had similar complaints about the lack of direction. I dislike the assumption that a canned voice coming out of a tablet should be congratulating and guiding my child more than I should. Think about the many years before ipads were available. Children had coloring books and writing sheets with dotted lines. The obvious feedback had to come from the person giving them the materials. My question is this- is technology allowing parents to be lazier? Are we taking advantage of a great learning tool and diminishing our role in children’s education?

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