Tablets and Kids: What to Know

(StatePoint) If you’ve handed over your tablet to your children more than once, it may be time to consider getting them their own device. There are a lot of great children’s tablets that offer so much more than passive games and videos.

“Tablets can be a great source of learning if the content is relevant, engaging and age-appropriate,” said Dr. Clement Chau, director of learning for LeapFrog.

Before you take the plunge, here are some things to keep in mind.

Durability

Kids are not necessarily known for their delicate handling of breakable objects. So, look for kid-friendly products that are durable, and built specifically for kids’ hands.

Content

Seek out tablets pre-loaded with fun and useful age-appropriate content that blends education and fun. For example, those from LeapFrog, a leader in innovative learning toys, offer well-rounded curricula important to children’s development. The new LeapFrog Epic Academy Edition and LeapPad Ultimate feature preloaded content teaching core skills like mathematics, reading and science, as well as music, puzzles, logic and creativity to help prepare children for preschool and beyond. Both tablets offer access to a learning library of more than 1,000 apps, eBooks and videos and feature built-in technology that assess kids’ progress to personalize lessons. Additionally, LeapFrog Epic Academy Edition comes with a free trial of LeapFrog Academy, an interactive learning program for 3-6-year-olds that guides kids on learning adventures they can play on the go.

Safety

Remember, a tablet is not just a toy, it’s two-way access to the world at-large. But you can keep kids safe with a few precautions. Look for tablets that are kid-safe right of the box, with features like kid-friendly web browsers that provide access to pre-selected websites. Then, take advantage of parental controls to manage features.

Balance

If you find that your child becomes inseparable from his or her new tablet, consider setting rules like no tablets at the dinner table or for one hour before bedtime, and use built-in parental controls to set time limits. Even when devices are strictly being used for educational fun, it’s still important to limit screen time and strike some balance.

As tablets continue to top children’s wish lists, parents should do their research. With the right devices, apps and safety features, tablets can provide opportunities to engage kids’ creativity and knowledge.

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