The Use of Technology with Young Children

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The Departments of Health and Human Services (HHS) and Education released a joint policy brief on the use of technology with young children to help families and early educators use technology to promote active, engaged, meaningful, and socially interactive learning.

The American Academy of Pediatrics suggest for children younger than 18 months to avoid use of screen media other than video-chatting. Parents of children 18 to 24 months of age who want to introduce digital media should choose high-quality programming, and watch it with their children to help them understand what they’re seeing. For children ages two to five years, one hour of technology use is appropriate per day, inclusive of time spent at home and in early learning settings and across devices.

HHS supports more limited technology use in early care and education settings. More information on their recommendations can be found in Caring for Our Children: National Health and Safety Performance Standards. Parents are encouraged to consider not only the amount of time, but also the quality of the content, the context of use, and opportunities the technology provides to strengthen and/or develop relationships.

Another great resource for families is Common Sense Media. A non-partisan, not-for-profit organization, Common Sense Media provides information and tools to help navigate the media options available for families with children. In addition to media recommendations, you can find reviews on video games, movies, TV, and apps. Common Sense Media and other resources can be found in the Home Visitor Portal under Resources.

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