Author of parenting books blogs about raising children and health issues.
How young is too young for kids to surf the Internet?
Wed, Apr 06, 2011 at 8:00 AM
Last week, I asked (and lots of you answered) if there is a right age to get kids a cell phone. This week, I've set my sights on the Internet sites in front of my face. As in, how young is too young for kids to get online?
Of course, kids of any age require supervision while surfing the Web. But even with supervision, would you allow your young children — say toddler age — to surf the Net?
My eldest, the second-grader, has clicked around the Internet a little bit — mostly at school and only on the websites that the teacher is currently talking about. She knows, and uses, the word "Google" as a verb and occasionally asks to visit specific websites (like PBSKids.org) at home.
My youngest, the preschooler, has never touched the computer. She's not really much of a techie kid anyhow, preferring dolls and her toy kitchen to video games or TV. (And that is great by me.) So it never seemed necessary to push screen time on either one of my kids when they weren't asking for it.
But there are plenty of folks who might think my kids are missing out on useful educational experiences by not spending more time on the computer. I mean let's face it, computers are here to stay, and the sooner kids get used to using them, the sooner they'll be able to do things like design websites, write computer codes, and all of that other techie computer stuff that makes my eyes glaze over.
So if that's the case, what is the right age to start introducing kids to computers? And are kids who don't regularly surf the Web at a disadvantage?
The opinions expressed by MNN Bloggers and those providing comments are theirs alone, and do not reflect the opinions of MNN.com. While we have reviewed their content to make sure it complies with our Terms and Conditions, MNN is not responsible for the accuracy of any of their information.