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Do you let your toddler play on the computer? And for how long if you do? If you don't, why not?

Tags: computers, toddlers

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I'm raising my 3 1/2 yr. old grandson. He was always wanting to get on the computer to do something, so I looked up some great free educational websites and he LOVES it. He normally has a short attention span and rarely sits still, but this is the ONE thing that he will sit and do for 45 minutes easy. You can find a variation of activites from learning letters and their sounds, numbers, art (painting), puzzles, stories, nursery rhymes, games, etc. A couple of the games he clicked on I thought would be too advanced for him, but he shocked me, he caught on all by himself quickly learning how to play it. It's also a GREAT teaching aid for hand eye coordination. And of course I always sit with him anytime he's on the internet as a safety precaution. Here are just a FEW sites my grandson loves, check them out:

http://www.fisher-price.com/fp.aspx?st=2601&e=gamesByAge&mc...

http://www.nickjr.com/playtime/cats/games/index.jhtml?=

http://www.fastq.com/~jbpratt/education/links/preactonline.html

http://www.kidscomjr.com/home_flash.html
My middle boy would play for hours on the computer from 2 until he turned 5. I started limiting his time as he's gotten older to keep him entertained but not addicted. He learned to read early and could pretty much spell things he shouldn't be looking at by 5. We started using the content advisor then.

My youngest doesn't spend nearly as much time on it because it's too frustrating for him because he doesn't read.
Hi! Check out www.NetSmartzKids.org and www.ClubUYN.org (ages 5+) for some fun games and activities. It's brought to you by the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children and provides a fun way to teach young kids about Internet and real world safety. There's a chock-full of resources for parents, too! Visit www.NetSmartz.org. Hope this helps ;)
Joan Seaton said:
I'm raising my 3 1/2 yr. old grandson. He was always wanting to get on the computer to do something, so I looked up some great free educational websites and he LOVES it. He normally has a short attention span and rarely sits still, but this is the ONE thing that he will sit and do for 45 minutes easy. You can find a variation of activites from learning letters and their sounds, numbers, art (painting), puzzles, stories, nursery rhymes, games, etc. A couple of the games he clicked on I thought would be too advanced for him, but he shocked me, he caught on all by himself quickly learning how to play it. It's also a GREAT teaching aid for hand eye coordination. And of course I always sit with him anytime he's on the internet as a safety precaution. Here are just a FEW sites my grandson loves, check them out:

http://www.fisher-price.com/fp.aspx?st=2601&e=gamesByAge&mc...

http://www.nickjr.com/playtime/cats/games/index.jhtml?=

http://www.fastq.com/~jbpratt/education/links/preactonline.html

http://www.kidscomjr.com/home_flash.html
I do let my 4 year old daughter play on the computer. We have created short-cuts on our desktop so she can only go on things like starfall, noggin and pbs kids. We usually only allow her on for 30 minutes or less and it is not everyday. My 2 and 1/2 year old son enjoys the thomas games online. He doesn't play by himself yet. I think that it is important to watch my kids on the internet and I also think that it helps them. It is teaching them computer skills and also helps with their phonics. I think using a mouse takes skill and fine motor. I think that is a useful tool!
Both my 5-yr-old & 3-yr-old have been playing on the computer since they were 12-15 months old...my 5-yr-old was lucky enough to be able to take some classes at daycare when she was 2-3, also...they are now both better on the computer than my 11-yr-old (we didn't have custody of her until she was 6, so we couldn't really expose her to it)...they have LOTS of fun, but we only allow them to use the pc on the weekends and they have to take turns. There is no internet on their computer...oh, yeah, they got their own computer to share from Santa 3 years ago.
I let my two year old on the fisher price web-site for the ABC Zoo game. She loves it, but she only does this for about 15 minutes and then she's bored of it.
I did hear at a early childhood conference that when a child is on the computer or watching TV that their brain activity is the same as watching a plant grow....
It's not stopping me from letting her watch Disney classics, PBS, and playing that little computer game. I'm even looking into buying Jump Start pretty soon since she's getting pretty familiar with the computer.
TVs and Computers are a part of everyday life now. I think it's more important to monitor their time and what they are surfing/watching than to completely forbid it.
Plus, it's a great incentive and something I can take away from her when she misbehaves!!!! HA!
I have a four year old son and I let him play on the computer on occasions, I think it's best to encourage them to play with toys that help them use their imagination and creativity. I bought one of those toy kitchens for him and he enjoys playing with it. It's great for boys and girls.

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