It really says a lot when the creator of the iPad wouldn’t even let his kids use an iPad. When asked by New York Times reporter Nick Bilton if his kids loved the iPad, he replied:
“They haven’t used it. We limit how much technology our kids use at home.”
That’s quite the response! Among tech executives, there’s a growing trend of parents who won’t let their kids use the very technology they invent. They’ve even taken to sending their kids to Waldorf Schools where computers are nowhere to be seen and hands on learning about nature and the arts is front and canter.
“My kids accuse me and my wife of being fascists and overly concerned about tech,” says Chris Anderson, CEO of 3D robotics and father of 5. “They say that none of their friends have the same rules… That’s because we have seen the dangers of technology firsthand. I’ve seen it in myself, I don’t want to see that happen to my kids.”
When it comes down to it, our electronics can be addictive, and that goes for children too. I’ve seen young children be delayed access to an iPad, and when I mean young, I mean, 2, only to have it result in a complete meltdown. It’s like taking a junkie’s junk away from him. So are we robbing our children of an opportunity, or are we opening them up to a life free of what Steve Jobs and Chris Anderson are concerned about?
I think at some level it’s important for kids to know how to use computers, but to use them with respect. We weren’t allowed free run of the television or computer (when we finally got one) when I was a kid, after all. Make sure kids get to spend plenty of time outside in nature. They might act like jerks about it now, but they’ll thank you later in life.