This is a guest post from Jenna at Bucktown Bargains. Thanks Jenna!
Computers & Kids!
I have become obsessed with saving money while shopping in stores and especially, online! Why spend the money if you don’t have to?
I got started as a deals blogger while on maternity leave from my “real” job as an Elementary Computer Teacher. So, I am going to share with you today some of my frugal tips when it comes with children and technology…
Teaching our children how to navigate on the computer is as essential as teaching them how to tie their shoes. More importantly, teaching them how to network safely on the Internet has become a necessity these days.
As an Elementary computer teacher, I use various activities to integrate classrooms lessons into meeting technology standards. In my experience, students seem to be more motivated to write if using a computer. In the computer lab, students use Kidspiration software as to organize information. Computer-based concept mapping can be used during the brainstorming activity as a prewriting strategy. The computer facilitates by providing a visual map of the ideas generated. In essence, linking new information with old through a mapping system by moving from traditional pencil-paper concept mapping to hypertext. This software allows children to use create a graphic organizer using pictures and words easily created with Kidspiration. Another great feature of Kidspiration is converting the graphic organizer into an outline with the click of the mouse. This allows children to flip back and forth and really organize all their ideas..
You can download a 30 day FREE Trial at Kidspiration.com. They also have Inspiration and Webspiration for grades 6-adult.
I often get the question about Internet Safety from parents and I tell them all the same thing, there is no reason that children should have a computer in their bedrooms. A computer needs to be in a family room, no if and or buts about it. Another question I get a lot is, “How do I prevent my child from MySpace or Facebook?” Well, you have to offer an alternative. I recommend Epals.
ePals is a way for kids to safely connect, collaborate and learn using the leading protected email and blog solutions. Now, this program is used by teachers and school districts, but did you know that parents can use it for their children? This site allows children to connect and write to children all over the world.. You just search for the country or language (it’s kinda link match.com for kids, but for friends)
The best part about this program is that the emails are filtered. So, anything that is inappropriate will be flagged and sent to your email..Also, your child will not be able to download or send attachments without your approval. If your child has been bothering you for an email address, this is a great solution. Click HERE to check it out! Oh, and it’s FREE!
I want to end by mentioning that it’s never to early to teach children about not only Internet Safety, but to teach young children how to use a computer properly. Here are some sites that I use with my own childre:
Headsprout – Learning how to use a mouse
Growing with Technology- Great site for children age 3-12.
Bees and Honey – Great for learning how to count and use the mouse.
Make sure to check them out!