When my husband broached the subject of buying the four-year-old an iPad, I was quick to explain why I didn’t want him to have that kind of technology at this age. I don’t want him to get addicted to screen time. I also don’t want the tantrums that result in the iPad being taken away due to poor choices or bad behavior. I’ve seen kids with their faces stuck in tablets or phones, and I want to hold off on that for as long as possible. I want to focus on him being able to hold a conversation, socialize with family and friends and creatively problem solve. He gets just enough screen time playing on my iPad with puzzles, letter and number games I’ve downloaded for him. Right now, I feel that he doesn’t need his own. That may change in the future, but I am attempting to avoid it for now.
I also want my kids to PLAY OUTSIDE. Novel idea, I know. They need fresh air, to burn off energy and learn to do things like throwing a frisbee, ride a bike, blow bubbles and kick a soccer ball. While the four-year-old gets outdoor playtime at daycare most days, I still like to sit outside with both kids in the afternoons and on weekends to let them play.
Some of the toys I’ve added to their Amazon list this year are for educational purposes, like this Melissa and Doug Calendar and this globe. But – a lot of the items are for them to enjoy and play with and, in the four-year-old’s case, are what he circled in the Amazon and WalMart Christmas catalogs we received the day after Halloween.