Should small children be social networking​?

 
If you didn't already know, there is a social networking website on the internet geared for children 13 and younger.  

By Shelby Moore

Teacher

Shelby Moore is a kindergarten teacher at an inner-city school in Houston and was recently awarded as one of the East Region's Campus Teachers of the Year.

If you didn't already know, there is a social networking website on the internet geared for children 13 and younger.  This social networking site by Disney is called TOGETHERville, and it operates like Facebook but with built-in safety measures like parental supervision. TOGETHERville offers a range of entertainment such as games, music videos, animated clips and opportunities for kids to interact with other kids online.

In this technological world we live in today, kids are becoming more and more tech-savvy at a younger and younger age.

As a teacher I see pros and cons to young kids using this social networking site. Based on my browsing, TOGETHERville, seems like a fun, safe, and educational tool right at young kids' fingertips. In addition, the earlier kids are exposed to the computer, the earlier they can practice proper computer skills and behavior. With the ability for parents to oversee what their child is doing, it also allows parents and children to communicate with each other and also teach them proper cyber etiquette.

On the other hand, is it possible that there is a certain age when it becomes too young to be so "plugged-in"or should we just accept it as the direction we are headed as a society? Do you think our children are opting to spend more time playing video games or on the computer than playing outdoors with their friends? Could spending less face-to-face time with friends stunt their social development skills? Do you think our youth are overstimulated by technology?

 

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