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Kids 10 and up need to learn how to be responsible for something so they are prepare when they are adults, do you want your child to be all alone without he/her phone, while he/her other friends are on their phones. Thats just sad. And what happen if there is a emergency? How will they communicate with their parents?
The Information era is here. Teenagers need to learn that they have the biggest library of information at their disposal. Safety also helps when they can call police, or even video tape police as a protest agaisnt police brutality and corruption.
With the world at their fingers, all they need to learn is how to access the information.
I believe in allowing kids to have phones IF and only if they are mature and responsible enough to use them. I love technology but like to much of ANYTHING, it can be bad. If you let technology hamper your social life, it is your own fault. I'm pro kid-technology.
Cell phones are a great safety precaution. You can set limits so they don't play with it all day. GPS systems can now locate your child in case of an emergency. If your child needs to contact somebody walking home from school or out with friends they can call you. If your child has had a tablet,computer or IPod before than you can probably trust him/her with a smartphone. Once you get into middle school you don't want to be the only one out of all your friends without a phone. Now that's just sad. But it is another bully preventer. If you are ever away from home you don't have to listen to your kids complain about them being bored. And if you are worried about radiation like most parents are then think about this. They have probably held a type of phone to their ear or even in their lap. If they have a laptop it has probably sat in their lap. Think about all of their electronic items. Do you think this one cell phone is going to make that big of a difference. I mean like really?
What happened to forts, tree houses, and skinned knees? Or rope swings and swimming in the river?
The other day it snowed in my town. I was so excited because of how rare it is. I got my kids dressed up to go play, and all they wanted to do is play with electronics. It is disheartening.
I agree it is mentally stimulating, but physically and socially it is detrimental to their health. People actually need social interaction and fresh air to live happily. Over time shut inside away from the world, it has been studied that people are more likely to become depressed.
I think kids /could/ have a cell phone at this age, but only if it were something like a track phone for safety purposes only. It may be an old type of phone, but buying them something as expensive and fragile as an Iphone is, first of all, a waste of money, second, could get them into trouble, and third, is just a danger to healthy interaction with people.
At this age, kids are still too young to be responsible for something like an Iphone. They might lose it or break it, or it could be stolen very easily. This is a loss of money. Older phones are more durable and less expensive. On top of that, safety should be first priority at this age, not how many friends a child has in their contact list or on Facebook.
Further, Iphones could really get kids into trouble. Sexting is on the rise, and kids this young don't need to be exposed to something like that. On top of that, the ability to use the internet on their phones is just promoting websites they shouldn't be on this early in life, like Facebook or Myspace. Porn could also be introduced to them this way. This one is kind of an exception because parents are responsible to set locks on the phone, but even with locks, a more advanced phone allows kids to shut out healthy interactions. Children should be learning how to interact with people, and on top of that /should/ be learning more advanced reading and writing skills, and if they're always receiving and sending texts that say something along the lines of "Where r u?" "R u going 2 da game?" "C u 2moro" this doesn't help them learn. I don't think it stunts IQ, per se, but it certainly doesn't help it grow and mature.
Also, children need to be taught healthier ways of dealing with boredom. Phones with internet promote sedentary lives. This is going to sound old school, but back in my day, kids went outside and played basketball and rode bikes and used their imagination. Boredom is meant to help us, especially children, to be creative. More advanced phones don't promote that and certainly won't help them solve real life problems later on in life.
Also, if kids are being bullied for not having a phone, or for having an old phone, that's not a reason to give in to buying them an advanced one. This only rewards the bullies and gives your child the message that you can solve all of your problems by ignoring them or giving into their demands. You wouldn't starve your child if he/she was being bullied for being overweight, would you? Just like in all cases of bullying, the bullies need to be punished and your child should learn the valuable lesson that facing your problems head-on is better than running from them.