Don’t Replace Relationships with Gadgets – Compromise it!
In the modern world of digital technology, it is impossible to imagine people without gadgets. Smartphones, tablets, computers are an integral part of our lives.
Parents are always an example for a child, especially in childhood. Children watch mom and dad; they see in their hands the means of communication and are interested in them. In our time, it is impossible to isolate a son or daughter from digital devices.
Of course, parents regulate the presence and intensity of digital devices in the lives of their children. Howsoever, everything needs a golden mean in order to bring positive effects. Already in elementary school, schoolers need to have a computer, and first-grade schoolchildren need a cell phone. So, it is quite hard for parents to completely renounce electronic devices, but there are a lot of ways how parents can try to turn them into helpers instead.
Immersive Digital Transformation in Family Life
Like globalization and urbanization, digitalization has already changed the world. The rapid spread of information and communication technologies is an insuperable force that influences a lot of spheres of modern life — economics, social and cultural spheres — and determines everyday existence. Childhood is not an exception. Coming into this world, quite a great number of children are immersed in digital technologies.
A digitalized era is a part of busy and hectic lives for all of us and especially for people who have children. Usually, they are worried about the gap between them and children because of the little time they spend together and a lot of time they spend in the virtual world. And your guidance as a parent needs to keep up with the conditions of the digital era as smart devices are in your children’s lives and they’re here to stay.
As children grow, the potential for transition to digital technologies, which forms their life experience, also increases, providing them with seemingly unlimited opportunities to learn and communicate, seek recognition and be heard.
How Immersive Technologies are Affecting Parents and Children
A survey conducted among parents and children revealed that some families have a tense inner relationship because members spend too much time on devices rather than with each other. Research shows that 36 percent of parents get distracted by gadgets during conversations, they start to interact less with their children, and children have to compete with digital devices for their parent’s attention that can further flow into behavioral problems for them and cause either physical or mental disorders.
But this doesn’t make digital technologies a ‘bad guy’. Digital technology and innovation offer increased access to learning, interest groups, markets, and services, as well as other benefits. They can help children realize their potential and ultimately open the door to a better future, so it’s only a matter of rational and healthy usage of gadgets.
Both parents and children should hold on to the so-called ‘digital diet’ in order to avoid a harmful effect and keep a balance in their lives. Technologies are important for people — they make life easier and help to make new discoveries, but upon condition that the person controls the technology, and not vice versa.
A recent study shows that poor affection in the childhood cultivates inferior self-confidence and makes kids feeling more estranged, aggressive, violent, and anti-social, such children are tend to have problems with psychological health, to be more likely subject to depression and anxiety, and are less capable of displaying compassion and relating to other people.
Then on the contrary — individuals who described to be getting care and love expressed by parents facilitated a better self-image, better-quality educational performance, healthier parent-child communication, and fewer psychosomatic and behavioral difficulties as well as happier, healthier and more successful lives as adults.
How to Use Immersive Technologies for a Better Family Life?
Well then, how can you bring more affection to your family? The answer is quite simple — be playful with your child! Do enjoyable activities together like playing games, block-building, crafting, coloring, etc.
But the thing is that in contemporary America not all parents are enlightened by the idea of pretending to play with their children as they find it exhausting and annoying, and expect children to entertain themselves on their own.
Another experiment showed that mothers who weren’t playful at all with their children increased their babies’ negative affect and decreased their responsiveness. So, parent-child interactions are significant, especially with infants and young toddlers, parent’s playfulness is beneficial to children’s cognition, imagination, creativity, through play with parents, children learn social communication skills.
Many modern parents wonder: is there a better way, other than pretend-play with children? And as a matter of fact, there is! Pretend-playing is tightly connected with fantasizing, being creative and hence interacting with an imaginary world, together with joint attention and bonding communication of a child and a parent. And all these facets lead us to the technology of augmented reality that combines all the above. Augmented reality fetches the digital world to the real world that we can see, hear, and feel.
AR is the utmost enjoyable, play-based activity — using AR application will be not so exhausting for parents and it’ll make children play only more interactive and fun meanwhile ensuring quality time spending with their parents. The recent study showed that AR technology is effective in maintaining a high level of motivation and engagement even among preschool children.
Games are inclined to make children extremely happy. They are a major part of children’s lives – games play a huge role in their growth, formation, and interaction. Augmented reality games let youngsters bring various characters to life and interact with them. It feels to them like a world they have in their imagination coming to life right before their eyes, which enables children to feel very comfortable.
Benefits of Augmented and Virtual Reality Experiences
The 3D basis of AR brings about natural collaboration and enriches communication. The overlay of real and imaginary worlds also encourages critical thinking regarding how the whole thing works and where the augmented object actually is. AR is easy to use which empowers children and gives them satisfaction and together with playing they are also learning.
The educational element in the AR games helps to spawn the analytical and reasoning skills of the kids. Thus, AR games assist children to gather useful and practical knowledge.
This self- directed learning boosts their ability to focus and memorize information about the surrounding world by combining reality with virtual contents in meaningful ways, which is rather motivating for children and engaging for parents. Augmented reality games and applications bring a little bit of magic in our routine reality, at the same time letting and stimulating us to interact with it. Interacting with the world of fantasy that augmented reality technology brings to life, makes the children feel out of the box.
Additionally, the good news is that AR apps enable discovering neighborhoods and receiving loads of sunlight and fresh air as you can play it anywhere, even outdoor. And the great thing is that nearly all AR games call for exploring and interacting with the surroundings. Unlike other mobile games, AR ones promote children to be active and engaged with outward things as well as with friends and family, improve their navigation skills, and most importantly — keep them off the couch!
With children spending increasingly more time on mobile gadgets as a preferred place for playtime, the rising trend of AR games can bridge the gap between the real and virtual world as well as the gap between parents and children because they’ll spend more time together.
AR is an upbeat trend to keep youngsters involved in the exploration of their environment, while still being able to enjoy the dynamism and creativity afforded by digital technologies. Moreover, AR games educate children on how to be more sovereign as it is easy to handle the various situations in the play mode. The AR interface of the games boosts their sense of authorization and freedom. Accordingly, children try to handle tasks in everyday life which also increases their confidence levels.
Our mission as parents is to reduce the harmful effects and expand the opportunities arising from digital technologies. Since we cannot avoid digitalization and flooding our lives with digital gadgets, we can benefit from them when channel them in the right direction. A most vivid example is AR technology which presents opportunities for children and their parents that can’t be ignored!
A lot of scope and potential are seen for this technology in the future. AR is helping in shaping children’s experience, it is also improving a kid’s imagination and affecting their behavior. And moreover, AR leisure with your kid is driven by togetherness — and it’s that feeling of happy ease that matters most. Children are the creators and technology is just an enabler!