Technology and Parenting: How to Parent in the Modern World
It is fair to say that parenting a child in 2023 is vastly different from parenting a child in 2013. Nowhere is this truer than in the realm of special educational needs, such as autism. There have been many changes in parenting tips and styles in this area over the last ten years. Thankfully, technological assistance and apps have emerged.
It is now easier for parents to help a child who has autism to manage day-to-day life. However, it can be a bit tricky to know where to start and if you want to invest in technology to help your child to develop.
So, this article will guide you through some key steps which can help you to parent your child with greater ease and better long-term outcomes.
Select Appropriate Apps
Many children’s apps are bright, loud, and have a lot of movement. That is fine for the average child, but if you have a child that is on the autism spectrum, these things can be overstimulating and can cause them to become overwhelmed. So, aim to find an autism app that is appropriate and can help them learn easily with encouragement but, of course, without being too bouncy or loud.
It’s also worth researching parenting apps aimed at parents of children with autism, as these can provide you with tips on how best to manage your child in day-to-day life without reading like an instruction manual.
Select Tools That Match Your Child’s Level
All children have different reading and educational levels. So, when it comes to choosing the right tools to help your autistic child, make sure it is matched to their requirements. Of course, the majority of educational apps will be aimed at improving your child’s reading, writing, or arithmetic, but if you start with an app or a program on a computer that is too advanced, it can lead to your child becoming frustrated.
If you aren’t sure what your child’s educational level is, it is best to talk to their teachers and come up with a plan so that you can help them to advance their skills via technology.
Use Communicative Technology
Technology and apps that are aimed at younger children will focus on helping them to develop their speech. However, this is a feature that phases out as the age rating on the apps increases. Children who have autism spectrum disorder, however, often have issues with clear and concise communication. So, it is best to find an app or a game that will focus itself on helping them to communicate, identify emotions and express themselves.
Set Time Limits
Ah, yes, the dreaded screen time conundrum that all parents dread.
Children generally love spending hours upon hours on a computer, watching videos and researching. However, this is not good for their eyesight, for their social development, or for their mental health. So, aim to set time limits on devices and ensure that your child is aware of them prior to you setting the timer and reminding them when it is coming to an end. Then, ease them onto another task; this will prevent frustration, and meltdowns and will also set a boundary on your end.