CHILDREN AND MOBILE PHONES 1 Essay Example
Children should be Allowed to own and Use Mobile Phones
As the time changes, human life is also undergoing constant changes. Mobile phones were initially associated with fewhigh-class individuals and were regarded as something lavish and wealthassociated. Then gradually, even the common average man on the street like vegetable vendor or cobbler became capable of owning a phone. See the world today; it is common to find even young kids and schooling children actively chatting away on their cellphones (Mezei, Benyi, & Muller, 2007).
Welcome to the new era world where it seems like nearly everybody is in possession of at least a mobile phone with children increasingly becoming passionate and confident users of the mobile technology. From the research conducted on the children’s usage of mobile at the international comparison (Turley, Baker, & Lewis, 2014), it is evident that children are currently embracing the opportunities offered by mobile phone technology in ways that could not have been imagined ten years back and far much ahead of that of their parents. However, there has been a heated debate regarding the permissibility of children to own mobile phones. While some people argue that letting children especially kids to own mobile phones exposes them to various health risks that can harm them, others taking the same line of thought, assert that a child in possession of a mobile phone easily communicates to their parent or guardian when in danger. Based, on these arguments, it seems this matter still a contentious issue in the current society.
Deign (2013) explains that parents should download applications that can help them track their children while using their phones and where they are going to by an application that can be given to the parents or relatives. According to research by Berg Insight, the study shows that the number of people who are going to have a family locator services is going to increase at a rate of 34% in 4 years. In some applications, it is possible to see the child’s messages and calls. There are some children who are concerned about the privacy. Parents can have the control of their children phones without their approval as they will not realize that their parents are tracking them and knowing everything, but in Europe, the child should accept that he or she is going to track so not all the countries are part of this application.
Crowe (2016) asserts that mobile phones enable children to communicate with others; it is something very important in our daily life. Children should also have a cell phone as we do. There are some reasons for allowing your child of having a cell phone which are: practicality which means that parents need to get a phone to their children to allow them to communicate with each other when they are in a different place. And to make them feel safe is another reason because children can face many problems so parents can reassure their children. And the most important reason is trust because the child can know if you trust him or her by giving them the cell phone. Social communication is also important as people use social media to communicate with others and to be connected to the world.
While the overwhelming majority children use their phones devices responsibly, it is natural for parents or guardians to raise concern about how their kids use such powerful devices (Lee et al, 2016). Like any other important devices, using mobile phones can be a risk. However, through responsible use, the risk can be minimized. The best way to establish how children use the mobile phones is by literally asking them. However, as a parent, it important understands that texting, gaming, socializing, photo and video sharing are some of the activities popular with kids.
Therefore, it is important to peg the decision to allow them to use these gadgets on the significance of these activities to the children. While gaming kills boredom and makes children feel so lively in the environment, socializing improves the children’s networking abilities. There are an increasing number of social networking apps and sites surpassing the commonly known such as Facebook, WhatsApp, and Twitter. The current environment is all about sharing and socializing since the children get into their pre-teen in which they do not get pre-occupied with a number of activities (Van den Bulck, 2007). Using mobile phones is away to avert boredom, feel trendy and understand their parent truly cares for them. The good news is if children are allowed to have mobile phones at that age, their usage is focused on everyday life, majorly school life, those with whom they interact typical friends and peers they get to know from school and in other parts of their daily lives.
How many times do children go to the library to look for books that can help them handle their homework? It is very rare may be because of the notion that library is for those the mature people (Sharples, Taylor, & Vavoula, 2010). Bearing this mind, children always tend to use their cellphones to help with homework by doing educational searches from the internet and using them as reminders for accomplishing the intended activities. Mobile phones always come with inbuilt note-taking applications, alarms and different types of apps that help the children to remain organized keep your child organized with their chores and prompt them of their next set of activities, tests, and homework assignment (Crowe, 2016). As a parent, however, it is crucial to note that regardless of the current changes in applications and technology, the parenting as a duty has not changed much. It is still necessary to make a follow-up and confirm if the child uses the phone for the intended purpose, ask questions, and set limits. Just understand that what happens with phones is more about persons and interactions than about technology. Children are usually happy to associate with the trending technology.
Understanding that parent and people considered important a child’s life cannot always be around every time. Of course, a child has to go to school and parents sometimes have to go to work. However, the close contact between the parents and the children has to hold because, either way, they need each to feel comfortable. The cellphone comes in handy. It provides an efficient way for the two parties to communicate with each other in case of an emergency or necessity. Take an example of divorced families. Although the parents have lost the love for the each other, the love of a child always persists as long as it comes clear the parents are there. In such a case, the mobile phone providers, a better communication pathway between the two parents. Further, consider the situation of extended familieswho situated in far apart, long distance. Owning a mobile enables children to remain in close touch with their families because after all, they need them for help in different situations.
Underscoring the fact that mobile phones are not easy to purchase because they are so expensive, enabling a kid to own a cellphone is away to show them trust. The children, in return, also trust their parents with all that they feel the parent should know or have. Imagine a family living without trust in each other. Life can be so secretive to the point that it becomes dangerous. In this case, cellphone acts away to trick a child to be open with their parents.
Advice to parents
As parents, offering parental controls regarding how children use their cellphones can be an important step in ensuring their safety while handling such devices. There are two major kinds of parental controls that can be put to play in such a case. The first is family guidelines or rules established to control the children and the second is the application of technology tools given by the cellphone manufacturers and app developers. The first strategy is more effective in many ways since it requires one-on-one conversation teaching the children protection and self-regulation, which stays with them wherever they go and can have a long-term effect in alifetime. Web filtering and monitoring apps are also available to use. However, it is important not to let these features provide a false sense of security of the child since they cannot serve as a substitute for the moral compass, resilience, and cognitive filters kids develop for their personal well-being. Using technology to limit or monitor the children cellphone activities, in most cases would require the parents to be upfront with their kids about the usage of phone and review regular as they mature.
Understanding that mobile phones have Web browsers, parents and teachers can use them to view the type of Web content usually preferred by the child, underscoring the content the parent might consider inappropriate children to view. Establishing rules and talking with children about the appropriate use of the mobile phones is baseline safety as they handle those devices. Depending on the device, becoming the administrator of the child’s phone, it is advisable to put the phone’s settings behind a password. With this, it is easy to block Web browsing and other tasks at the same time and decide if they can download personal apps, among other possibilities. This can be a vital step in deciding in deciding the type of phone a parent gives a child.
This paper, therefore, remains positive that children should be permitted to own phones. Although there are many claims that this may be dangerous to them, the same question still applies to the adults (Maisch, D2003). If a child is handling or owning a cellphone is risky, what about an adult? The mobilephone cannot select who to harm. The effect is universal. In my opinion, allowing children to own mobile phones comes with more benefits than disadvantages. It enables easy communication among the parents, children and long-distance relatives. It also promotes trust between the parent and a child, enhancing education, socializing and breaks boredom through gaming and chatting. The only thing a parent should do is providing guidelines to a child on how to use the mobile phones appropriately to avoid time wastage and other negative implications. Denying a child the right to use a mobile phone raises a number of questions that may lead the child to engage in some undesired activities such as spying on the parents’ phone, stealing or even developing a feeling of disconnect. If it is a must that the child has to be denied the right to use mobile, then, the simple rule is that parents should not use theirs too because curiosity cannot be avoided.
Crowe. J. (2016) Ten reasons why every child should mobile phone. Retrieved from http://techin.oureverydaylife.com/ten-reasons-kid-should-cell-phone-1554.html
Deign (2013).“How the Mobile Phone Can Help Keep Your Children Safe” Retrieved from https://www.nspcc.org.uk/preventing-abuse/keeping-children-safe/online-safety/
Lee, S., Lee, K., Yi, S., Park, H., Hong, Y., & Cho, H. (2016). Effects of Parental Psychological Control on Child’s School Life: Mobile Phone Dependency as Mediator. Journal Of Child & Family Studies, 25(2), 407-418.
Maisch, D. (2003). Children and mobile phones… Is there a health risk? The case for extra precautions. Journal of the Australasian College of Nutritional and Environmental Medicine, 22(2), 3.
Mezei, G., Benyi, M., & Muller, A. (2007). Mobile phone ownership and use among school children in three Hungarian cities. Bioelectromagnetics, 28(4), 309-315.
Sharples, M., Taylor, J., & Vavoula, G. (2010). A theory of learning for the mobile age. In Medienbildung in neuen Kulturräumen (pp. 87-99). VS Verlag für Sozialwissenschaften.
Turley, J., Baker, S., & Lewis, C. A. (2014). Expectations and levels of understanding when using mobile phones among 9–11-year olds in Wales, UK. Pastoral Care In Education, 32(3), 208-217. doi:10.1080/02643944.2014.943266
Van den Bulck, J. (2007). Adolescent use of mobile phones for calling and for sending text messages after lights out: results from a prospective cohort study with a one-year follow-up. SLEEP-NEW YORK THEN WESTCHESTER-, 30(9), 1220.
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