iPad Young Children with iPads

Discussion in 'iPad' started by CBJammin103, Nov 4, 2013.

  1. CBJammin103 macrumors regular


    Jun 6, 2007
    Louisiana, United States
    It seems that there are many, many children out there in what would be considered the "middle class" (or something close to the socioeconomic middle class on either side, upper or lower) that are carrying around iPads by age 5-11 or so. I know this is a big spread, but I do not recall any time in history that it has been commonplace for children to have such relatively expensive and powerful technology at such a young age.

    Admittedly, I do not have kids of my own yet but I feel that the nature of this shift in tech usage is entirely unprecedented and unstudied. Has anyone noticed any effects of this with your own or other children? What are these devices being used for (e.g., mostly games? mostly educational uses? videos?) on the whole? Also admittedly I am referring to US children but I'm sure this phenomenon is occurring elsewhere as well.
  2. bunnicula macrumors 68040


    Jul 23, 2008
    Well, I have a wide spread of kids, so let me lay it out for you.

    My 23yo... he had a Nintendo Gameboy (the original) when he was a toddler. He's had pretty much every handheld gaming system since then, along with most consoles, he's had his own desktop computer since he was about 8. He's had a few iPods. He bought himself the original iPhone (with his own money) on launch day 2007. He was 17. He's had a couple of other models since then. Never had an iPad. He's not interested in them.

    My 16yo... he's owned everything he wanted that came out since he was a toddler, just like his big brother (bear in mind that my kids buy their own gear or get it for birthdays/Christmas, etc). He's had a laptop before, but prefers desktops. He draws on a Bamboo tablet (he's an artist), and he's had a couple of models of iPod touch, and an iPhone since he was 12. He's had a 3G, a 4S and he's got a 5c now.

    My 12yo (she'll be 13 this month)... has had a handheld system (Nintendo DS)... she wasn't into it, so she gave it to her brother. HA. She's had iPhone since she was 10 (a handed down iPhone 4), she had an iPod touch before that... she got a handed down iPad when she was 11. iPad 1. She's about to get my handed down mini because I just bought an Air.

    What I'm saying here is that I have watched this happening over the last 20 or so years. It's a natural progression. Kids pick up tech VERY easily.

    Do I think parents should buy brand new LTE iPads for their 5yo kids? Probably not. I think a mini would suffice. Or a handed down model. But, I am not them and I don't know their budgets. :)
  3. illuminoraa macrumors newbie

    Nov 3, 2013
    New York
    I've definitely noticed this, and it completely baffles me as I just got my first iPad at the age of twenty one. My seven year old niece has been begging for an iPad because all of her friends have one, and her mother has just given her her old iPhone to use for games. There is no way they need such expensive and advanced tablets for gaming usage, which is the primary use according to my niece. They make low cost tablets that have strict privacy settings that I think are much more suitable.

    I think parents only succumb to this due to kids begging to keep up with the newest thing and the endless commercials that show iPad apps that relate to tv shows and toys.
  4. mcdj, Nov 4, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2013

    mcdj macrumors G3


    Jul 10, 2007
    It's all part of the plight of modern kids. Nothing is too good for them. No expense too great. Everyone's kid is sooper speshul. Parents coddle and pander to their every whim, lest they develop some horrible new psychiatric syndrome that will somehow hinder their ability to become a prince or princess.

    Pre-school graduation ceremonies. Kindergarten proms. Tiaras and cupcakes for just showing up to class. Catered play dates. Spring break vacations at luxury resorts. Today's kids deserve/demand everything they have coming to them, and more, to the tune of massive parental debt.

    Today's kids make "spoiled" sound like a compliment.
  5. kupkakez macrumors 68000


    Apr 4, 2011
    I dunno, back in the 90's as a young kiddo I was playing console/computer video games and had handheld gaming systems. This really isn't any different imo. It's just a different way of playing games etc.

    Actually, I would rather my kids (if I had any) have an iPad since there is way more educational apps available etc.

    Did people squawk about kids having Gameboy's as much as they do iPad's and iPod's nowadays? Is it just a pricing difference that gets people up in arms? Isn't it cheaper for a kid to get, say an iPad mini versus a Nintendo DS where new games are $30-$40 a pop? I don't get it.

    I think kids should be exposed to technology. I also believe kids should have time in a day where they go outside and play with toys that aren't electronics as well.
  6. Macalway macrumors 68020

    Aug 7, 2013
    Kids nag until the will of the adults weakens.

    Kids learn all the buttons. One, is is to play into the competitiveness of the parents by saying how all his friends have them, and they are treated like Oliver Twist, and are outcasts.

    When I was young, my parents made sure I had the competitive edge. I didn't need to ask :D

    Disclaimer: Just speculating, and am probably so far off I'm offending members here and various groups..... Sorry :eek:
  7. banana2000 macrumors newbie

    Nov 4, 2013
    I think so too children should learn how to use devices such as ipads because they will probably play a greater role in the future
  8. kupkakez macrumors 68000


    Apr 4, 2011
    No doubt. They are going to be exposed to it the minute they hit Kindergarten anyhow.
  9. antwon412 macrumors member

    Apr 22, 2010
    My 6 year old has the iPad 1

    The 9 year old has my old iPad 3

    My wife has a mini and I have a new Air.

    My youngest uses ipads daily in school. He is far ahead of most other kids in his class since he has been using them for the last few years. My older son uses iPads as well as Chromebooks in class.

    It has helped them immensely to be able to simply do their work on the iPads and not spend time figuring out how to use them.
  10. andyw715 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 25, 2013
    We've recycled our iPhones into basically iPod touch's for our girls. Have been doing that since they were 3.

    At 2 our youngest daughter def picked up how to use the iPad pretty quickly...
  11. iPhone1 macrumors 65816


    Apr 2, 2010
    San Diego, CA
    I think part of it is that kids want to imitate what their parents do. If you're on your iPhone or iPad at home all the time, it is natural for them to be curious and want to play with Mommy or Daddy's "toy".
  12. TmanATL macrumors member

    Aug 29, 2013
    It is an interesting question -- what's the appropriate age to let a kid have an iPad, iPod touch, what about an iPhone?

    iPads can certainly be used for education. I bet plenty of schools start their kids on iPods at a very early grade.

    But yeah - giving a little kid a $600-700 device? sheesh. How much did gameboys cost? aprox $150-200??

    I feel so old at just 25-years-old!! Tech was nowhere near where it was today when I was in school.....
  13. Krazy Bill macrumors 68030

    Krazy Bill

    Dec 21, 2011
    Holy Crap. :eek: This is something I could have written. (No offense :D)

    This is scary.

    My wife is a school teacher for 3 and 4 year olds. Each one has an iPad issued by the school (donated actually). They take to them like a duck takes to water.

    She has been teaching for 30+ years and insists the iPad is a revolution in education. At least with toddlers.
  14. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    Kids are more tech savvy today than I was at their age and even then, I was very tech savvy. I don't care how people spend their money on their kids. If they want to create spoiled monsters then they will and no study or anything of the sort, will change that. Has technology affected the way kids are today? Totally. Faces in phones and other devices are now commonplace. Parents do it as well and it seems as though that is just the way people "interact" now. The good news is I don't have to worry about other people or other people's children. :D
  15. iPhone1 macrumors 65816


    Apr 2, 2010
    San Diego, CA
    I personally struggle with what I want my daughter exposed to. Sure it's cool that she can play Temple Run better than most adults at 4 years old but am I really contributing to her development or hindering it?

    Every kid is different but if you're a parent, you have to closely monitor what your kids do. Parental controls don't solve everything as if not careful, they could still watch whatever they want on apps like Netflix.

    In-app parental controls are not where they should be so it is the responsibility of adults to ensure the safety of a child. Yes, I am guilty of using an iPad as a baby sitter, we're all human. But I do my best to be involved and to limit my kids exposure to content and the damage that looking at a screen for extended periods of time can do for the social behaviors of my kid.
  16. legioxi macrumors 6502a

    Mar 2, 2013
    Add in 10 games and they're even. Considering there are many free educational games for the iPad that are of good quality, I'd say that puts the iPad ahead as the better device for kids.*

    *Preferably used hand me downs and with limited time so they're forced to go outside and play/socialize with actual humans most of the time.
  17. TmanATL macrumors member

    Aug 29, 2013
    nah weren't gameboy games like $30 each? and you get them for so much cheaper used.
  18. SwingOnThis macrumors regular

    Apr 23, 2008
    Picked up those $130 Nook HDs for my two kids, now they no longer steal my ipad. :D
  19. pixelzombie macrumors member


    Oct 31, 2013
    I had tamagotchis and those handheld game things that looked like Nintendo but weren't. Didn't get my first cell until around 15. First computer at 17. I think introduction to technology is a lot different now but it all depends. I'd get an ipad for learning and entertaining purposes for a young child to use. But if a teenager asked me for one, I don't think I would. There'd be a certain point that the ipad would become a luxury and redundant to their cell phones.

    I hate how much kids are spoiled and made to feel they're holier than thou for breathing. I understand the want for cool toys but they'll come with a price whether they work for it or sell something else they own.
  20. ZBoater macrumors G3


    Jul 2, 2007
    Sunny Florida
    Parents today of 5-10 year olds seem to be, from my observation, spoiling their kids rotten. There are a lot more challenges to deal with today, other than MTV and TI Calculators. Now we have the internet, Facebook, iPads, iPhones, etc. Many people try to "keep up with the Joneses".

    I cringe when I see a kid plopped in front of a TV or handed an iPad to "shut them up". I think these devices could be powerful teaching tools, if used appropriately. Think of them as the modern version of "Highlights" magazine Mr. Rogers Neighborhood and Sesame Street potentially rolled into one.

    Now, give a kid an iPad with games and Facebook and no controls, and you have just condemned them to a life of misery. They will develop with stunted social skills, great manual motor skills, and with an inability to type a coherent sentence without a LOL or BRB in it. Parents 50 years ago faced similar problems, perhaps not as pervasive as today with technology.

    I would definitely use an iPad as part of a broader training strategy IF I had a 5 year old. In a LifeProof case, of course.
  21. rui no onna macrumors 603

    rui no onna

    Oct 25, 2013
    Giving my 10-yr old godchild/niece a refurb iPad Mini 16GB Wi-Fi for Christmas. Didn't give her a birthday gift so this is kind of a combined gift, too. She's a consistent honor student and quite responsible so I think she's mature enough for this gift. Right now, I get to be the fun, techie aunt that spoils her. Probably won't be as lenient if I had kids of my own. :p
  22. enjoimorenow macrumors newbie

    Oct 30, 2013
    I think kids of different generations are just being exposed to different types of technology. When I was growing up (90's) we had a lot of different video game consoles, a desktop computer for the adults and one for the kids. We got our first phones around middle school, while my little sisters got theirs much younger in elementary. But, cellphones then really were just used for phone calls and texting, there was no internet, and only really snake for games. As we have all grown, everyone has continued to use the newer technology that has come out, although it has either been gifted, or purchased on our own. I have bought myself numerous macbooks, iMacs, iPads, iPhones, etc.

    Personally I think it is great to expose children to these devices as early as possible. Even if a 2 year old is only using the device to play temple run, they are learning how to interact with electronics, which will be invaluable in their lifetime. A 2 year old family friend can grab a phone, launch into the camera and take pictures, open temple run and play, etc. He isn't really doing much "learning" per say on the device right now, but he is learning how to interact and use it. When he gets into school, he will already know how to use the device, so he can focus his time on learning with it instead of learning to use it.

    That is not to say kids shouldn't also go outside. Kids should be playing sports, going out and socializing, etc. Exercise should also be started at a very early age with all children imo. It is very important that they learn to be healthy just as much as they must learn to interact with technology.

    Technology is not going to go away. In fact, it's only going to become more prevalent in our society. Any kids who don't learn how to use the technology now, are going to be far, far behind the curve, and as time goes on it will only be more and more difficult for them to catch up.
  23. Droidrage729 macrumors 6502

    Sep 28, 2012
    Young Children with iPads

    Your absolutely correct ! My daughter goes to a private school and each student was issued an iPad for class work with an otter box case on it! They don't bring them home or anything but this just shows how technology is being placed in the hands of children at an early age. She is 11 and in 6th grade. My 3 year old can navigate my iPad on her own. She knows what icons are her games knows what the home button does and even picks her shows out on netflix and hulu. I think it gives these kids a leg up for the future it's not a negative thing. That said I did NOT buy an iPad for my 3 or 11 year old lol.
  24. DanTSX macrumors regular

    Oct 22, 2013
    Either school supplied, or parental hand-me-downs.

    Not sure either is a good thing. Especially the dependence on them In schools. I think a lot of schools that missed the boat, or just misapplied classroom computing went all in and bought a bunch of iPads without knowing what exactly how to apply them.
  25. dtexan macrumors newbie

    Nov 29, 2012
    My 12 month old loves playing with my iphone. I keep it in the lifeproof case when he has it :)

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