How Technology Can Help You Become a Better Parent

WORDS: Diana Smith PHOTOGRAPHY Supplied

Over the past few decades, parenting has changed almost from the core. As technology has crept into almost every part of our lives, parents also need to learn how to deal with screens and buttons affecting their kids. Before computers, parents had to help their kids handle personal relationships, school, jobs and other things, but today, they also need to keep a watchful eye on how kids interact and communicate online. This might seem like an additional task in your already long list of parenting obligations, but technology is not all the bad. There are many ways tech can help you be a good and loving parent:

Easier monitoring

Even if you want to give your kids plenty of freedom to explore the world and make mistakes, it’s still necessary to keep an eye on your children to ensure their safety. Thanks to technology, parents have baby monitors, smartphone tracking apps and GPS-enabled smartwatches, all of which allow you to have more peace of mind when it comes to kids’ safety.

With technology continuing to evolve and get smarter (soon the Internet of Things will prevail), we’re introducing more and more interconnected devices and appliances to our homes. All of these gadgets and appliances come with parental controls to make it easier to ensure children’s safety, both when it comes to their location and activity.

Exercising hand/eye coordination

Video games are a huge part of technology, the biggest if you ask kids. There are tons of great educational games that parents can give to kids to improve their coordination and connections in the body. While it’s important to limit kids’ time in front of the screen, parents can provide children with effective ways to exercise hand/eye coordination, develop their motor skills and practice how to interact with systems.

More information on parenting

The internet is a well of information on all subjects imaginable, parenting included. Through blogs, websites and podcasts, you can reach parenting experts and access social information and forums. Thanks to the internet, parents have much more support than ever imaginable, as well as resources that are free and available to all. The most practical thing is parenting apps. Through helpful Mumli application, parents from all over the world can share experiences and knowledge, talk about education, discuss household rules and offer recommendations on entertainment, products, family travel, etc.

Staying in touch

Parents who travel a lot, or don’t live with their kids full-time, love technology and its ability to keep them in touch with their kids and family. Despite our work, errands and other activities, families can always be connected through tech. With just a quick call or text, parents can check up on their kids and see how they are doing. Also, kids can always reach their parents in an event of an emergency and rely on their help.

Additionally, technology allows individuals with special needs or disabilities to communicate with their loved ones. With adaptive tech, kids and adults with speech, hearing, vision and mobility issues can engage with family, attend work and school and make meaningful connections.

Easy ways to capture memories

Some younger parents today don’t even remember the days of carrying rolls of film to the store and receiving developed photos a week after. And the said rolls of the film could only provide you with 36 photos—we had to carefully choose which memories to capture. Today, thanks to digital cameras and high-quality smartphones, we can capture all the sweetest and funniest moments with our kids.

It’s important to live in the moment and not waste time on things that are hiding behind the screens, but it’s also wonderful to snap photos of your kids playing and laughing or record the first time your kid saw their pet. Just 30 years ago, having a camera was reserved only for the rich, while today, we can access high-quality video recording equipment with a touch on our smartphones. Additionally, it’s also possible to share videos with family and friends. Thanks to cloud technology, you can save, edit and share photos and create galleries you can show your kids when they grow up. The gift of memories is one of the most precious things you can provide to your children.

Many parents are rightfully concerned about the negative effect of technology on kids. We say rightfully because there are risks involved when it comes to sharing your family life online and allowing your kids to explore the depths of the internet. However, if parents learn about these threats and take time to educate and guide their kids, technology can be a wonderful parenting tool and an asset to parents and kids.

If you take time to explain the negative effects of tech and properly limit and monitor your kids’ online activity, you will benefit greatly from technology, learn a bunch of useful parenting things and enjoy all the advantages of the digital world together with your kids.