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Technology has taken unimaginable strides in the recent past and continuing to do so, our lives have never been so immersed in technology ever, our every task throughout the day has some kind of tech penetration. It is very obvious that children cannot be alienated from this phenomenon and they are equal participants, often more than equal. Whenever you hand a phone or tablet to a toddler you will notice that they will be able to at least figure out how to open it, and after some juggling, they might make a purchase!!!
Access to tech is enormous, by the age of 8-10 kids are better off than most adults with electronic devices. It all looks very positive, although there certainly is an alternate reality which all of us know but often ignore. Early childhood is the formative years for any kid where they experience tremendous brain development, as per leading neuroscience research papers, it is a well-established fact that electromagnetic waves emitted from these devices, especially phones can significantly hamper brain development. On the contrary, it is also impossible and impractical to not introduce them to technology. So, how do we maintain a balance?
Firstly, Physical Education Teachers and Schools have a huge role to play. It is very important that Schools ensure some form of Physical Activity or participation in competitive sports every day, instead of just one period per week. Even if it requires hiring extra assistant physical education teachers, especially for the kindergarten section of Schools. We need to ensure that we develop a culture of regular participation in sports, games etc, to ensure that they do not overindulge in the use of electronic gadgets.
Secondly, parents need to understand the significance of participation in physical activities and sports. It is a well-known fact that during formative years, it is of utmost importance for kids to indulge in physical activities, competitive sports and other outdoor activities. As a coach, I have worked with kids for the past ten years and have experienced that kids actively engaged in sports have the better attention span, Focus, physical and mental growth. Participation in sports also provides them a platform to socialize in early childhood, it inculcates social skills like competition, teamwork, leadership, sharing, handling losses and the joy of winning.
Sending kids to activity centers or sports academies shouldn’t be only to prepare them for a career in sports but it should be seen as a catalyst in their all-around development. You can also take your kids regularly for adventure activities, traveling etc, indulging in outdoor activities helps to reduce their total time spent on communication devices. Every generation has its own challenges in every phase of life, therefore we cannot hide our kids from those challenges but we can channel them towards something positive which enables them to be physically and mentally prepared to tackle every challenge with glory.