Lowering The Bar: Kids Going Online At Younger Ages

SHAILA on February 23, 2013

It is a given that kids today spend a lot of time online. Did you know the average kid spends 53 hours a week online, probably much more than what you or I spend working. The entitlement to connectivity has reached a point where taking the iPad away from your child earns you the 'meanest mom in the world' title!  

anjanettew / Kids Photos / CC BY-SA

Why do you think children are so hooked to the internet? It’s baffling. There is a threefold increase in internet usage among the 5-15 year olds since 2011. Dr. Kim Mason says many factors like anonymity, acceptance, an identity, status, access to the world, getting a voice and being away from adult supervision are factors responsible. 

Of late there are new entrants to the online world, and these are kids in the 3 to 4 year age group. Ofcom, for the first time researched the media habits of this faction. Many of the 3 to 4 year olds use a variety of media devices. 37% of them access the internet using a desktop, laptop or notebook, while 9% use a tablet at home. However, these very young online users access a website, watch TV programs or play online games. Staying connected is not their forte.

Another method tried out by officials assigned to the job of keeping children safe online in South Carolina is talking to grandparents. The 2010 US Census states that 7 million grandparents have grandchildren below the age of 18 living with them. Another research from the University of Chicago reveals that 60% of grandparents provide some sort of care to their grandchildren in a 10 year period. Moreover, these grandpas and grandmas are well equipped too; the digital age has made them tech savvy.  

A majority of the child internet users connect to the web from their homes. Parents and educators are trying different approaches to keep children safe online. We should know, as we have hundreds of thousands of parents using Mobicip’s parental control service to create a safe environment for young users.