Laptops for kids? It’s a hard choice in this day and age where children need technology to get their basic education. This has been putting parents in a dilemma and confusion of new sorts, they’re hesitant and agitated about handing smartphones, tablets, and laptops to their kids. Which is quite a sane concern considering how common the misuse of the internet is.
Albeit, in all honesty, the more a child is familiar and aware of technology, be it an 8 year old or a 13-year-old, the better! A 13-year-old should certainly have a laptop provided he/she is responsible enough to use it appropriately and take care of it.
Some parents think it’s wiser to keep a shared personal computer in the house so kids can work on their homework, play games, run graphical apps, and connect with their friends. This way, there’s a lesser chance for them to break it, lose it, or use it without supervision. However, if you educate the child about the dos and don’ts and plan sufficient away-from-screen activities, they’d happily be willing to keep up.
A new warning from AHA recommends and the American Academy of Pediatrics’ Screen Time Guidelines suggest the parents of preschoolers, preteens, and teenagers limit screen time for their kids to a maximum of two to three hours per day! Whereas in actuality, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has reported that kids aged 11 to 14 spend an average of nine hours per day in front of screens.
However, the advantages of handing a laptop to a 13-year-old always exceed the disadvantages. Let’s look at some areas that might help you better understand when should and shouldn’t a child be exposed to technology in a portable form.
At What Age Does a Child Need a Laptop?
The best time to introduce a child to laptops varies, depending upon the child’s readiness, learning methods, environment, and developmental stage mainly. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), a child below the age of 2 shouldn’t be exposed to any screens, whereas kids from ages 2-5 can have an hour a day under supervision.
When a child is 6-8 years old, they’ve completely developed their motor skills and are capable of enjoying time-based and complex activities on their own, but they still don’t need a laptop independently at this age.
Hence, perhaps the best time to invest in their first laptop is when they cross 10 years of age. This is when their education regularly starts incorporating computers and have a better sense of how to be more responsible about healthy usage of technology.
What is the Best Computer for a 13-Year-Old?
Thirteen, the most interesting welcome into teen life but a tricky time for parents. It can get hard to choose what applications, games, and content is appropriate for young teenagers. And of course, the choice of a perfect laptop!
13-year-olds are “rugged users” in 90% of the cases and only a laptop with a sturdy built can endure a high schooler’s handling. Mostly, it is recommended to use Chromebooks for school work as they are affordable, durable, and do the job just right.
However, laptop models like Acer Aspire 5 Slim, ASUS Flip C302 Chromebook, Lenovo Yoga 11E, Lenovo C330, Dell Premium laptop, and Acer Predator Helios 360 are the ideal choices!
If you observe your child be more inclined towards technology, illustrations, or games, then you should get a more “grown-up” laptop for them. A laptop such as Microsoft Surface Go 2, Lenovo IdeaPad Duet Chromebook, or MacBook Air.
Is It Okay to Get a Laptop for My 8-Year-Old Child?
Kids at this age don’t need a laptop, but it won’t hurt to expose a child to an independent laptop for limited amounts of time to save them from growing up as a technologically shy person in the 21st century. A simple rule could be that if the child has access to laptops at school, he/she should have access at home as well.
You can also ask the child’s teachers at school if they advise for or against a laptop for your child. Though it is fine to introduce technology to an 8-year old, it is also crucial to keep a strict check on the implementation of age-appropriate restraints.
Getting your kid a laptop at a young and tender age the right way can prepare them very well for future dealing with things like spam, phishing, data security, and general nonsense on the internet. You must educate the child of the rights and wrongs and let them explore their creativity freely on non-internet-based applications and games to spare yourself off some concerns.
Why Do Schools Recommend Chromebooks?
Chromebooks come with lower-performing chips to fit the relatively narrow demands of Chrome OS. They are cheaper, have better security and backup arrangements, and are robust machines. Chromebook is considered a homework powerhouse because it is equipped with lesser distractions and more useful features.
Schools recommend Chromebooks for students mainly due to far fewer upkeeping requirements. Over the last three years, Chromebooks have accounted for over half of the total shipments, more than Linux, Mac, Windows, and IOS products combined, of mobile computing. What makes it most favored for use in a school is that any student can log in to any Chromebook as they operate on Google accounts. This makes it easier for teachers as well as children to work and save time on carrying their devices from class to class.
Moreover, the hardware on Chromebooks is tailored for schools to withstand harsh usage. Chromebooks simply don’t allow students, even the tech-savvy ones, to do any more than they’re supposed to. The administrators can easily control what sites should be blocked from children’s access without having to go through the IT department.
Is a Laptop Necessary for Home School?
2021 has made laptops and desktop computers a necessity for education, even if you’re homeschooling your child by choice or due to the novel virus, you need a device to stay connected with the world. Children who are attending classrooms virtually do need a laptop for their daily work, from checking emails from teachers and peers to researching and making assignments regularly.
Rather than keeping a desktop computer to home school your child, a laptop is a far better option considering it can be taken from one room to another, in co-op spaces, to the library, or in collaborative learning settings. A survey on more than 3000 U.S students showed that the use of technology and the internet has improved their results by 81%, which is a dramatically high (yet impressive) percentage.
It’s been established that a child being homeschooled needs a laptop at one point or another, they don’t necessarily need an independent one. A shared one can do the job just as well. If your homeschooler is older than 15, getting them a laptop will also prepare them for college.
Wrapping it up
A survey finds that more than 94% of educators use and encourage their students to use laptops for learning and exploring. Children can be introduced to the digital world of wonders at any age provided that the parent by their side knows and understands their responsibility there. A laptop, when guided and monitored by an adult, can prove to be the greatest tool for learning.
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