The morning news just showed smart PJs – pajamas for bedtime stories. The $25 Smart PJ’s,which are available in pink and blue, have 47 colorful dot patterns that work with an app. When a camera on a tablet or phone is held over the dots, the app will launch an interactive bedtime story or show other types of educational content, including photos of animals or objects.
From what I can tell they use technology like QR codes to allow your smart phone to scan the dots on the pajamas and pull up information. – The QR Code to the left pulls up Googles web site but could easily be set up to pull up any page that I would have liked. To create your own QR Code you can use the website – http://www.qrstuff.com/index.html - QR Codes can be included on business cards, screen printed on shirts, or even shown with a projector and scanned with your smart phone.
The real question though is should kids be taking a smart phone to bed and pulling up their own bedtime stories? In some ways this is great, kids get the fun of playing with technology and improve their reading – but they are missing out on that family time that is so important.
How young is too young?
My kids got cell phones fairly early. Not 2 years old, but they were not yet in middle school.
Picture of a Cell Phone (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
When we got the each child a cell phone it seemed like a great idea. We have since gotten rid of our land line making it more important in my mind for the kids to have a way to keep in touch when they are home along. Now with a younger child I won’t hire a babysitter without a cellphone since we don’t have a phone in the house while we are out.
I remember with our oldest we broke down and got a phone when his class was taking field trips and he began doing more after school activities. We sent the boys to a private school and they frequently got home late at night with no access to the school – there was also no bus transportation, so with a cell phone he was able to let us know about 30 minutes before they got back that they were almost home. We lived about 30 minutes from the school so it worked out perfect! There were frequently parents with phones that they could borrow, but this way I knew there was no question of being able to reach my child at any point. As he became more involved in activities, his phone became more important to stay in touch. I’ll admit I wasn’t too happy to get a text from upstairs asking for a sandwich, but it’s still nice to get a message once in a while that he’s still doing ok and thinking of me. He moved away to a science and math school his Junior year of High School and his cell phone was his best way to stay in touch.
My middle son fought us on getting a phone. He still hardly uses his phone and is currently 16. He was just starting middle school when we got him a tracfone. Our thought was that if he lost it, we weren’t really out anything. He used it rarely, but it did come in handy when he was on field trips. Now that he is starting to drive I’m hoping he will at least remember to take his phone with him just in case he has a problem and needs it.
Our youngest doesn’t have a cell phone but he does know how to use it. He can do everything from talk to his brothers to play games on our phones. I can’t see getting him his own yet, but at the point that he starts going out on playdates, field trips, and gets to the point that he can stay home alone I do feel it might be a necessity.
What are the most important reasons to get a child a cellphone?
You can find just about anything on Pinterest! For children with Sensory issues
English: Red Pinterest logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Pinterest can be a treasure trove of information for parents. I’ve seen rice bins; used colored rice and children can play indoors – similar to sand but using rice and much easier to clean up. Parents can make weighted blankets with instructions found online. I even just noticed sensory salt.
For the parent just dealing with sensory issues there are also links to information about sensory issues. Pinterest is similar to Google but with pictures. You can get lost of hours wandering around. For businesses it’s a great marketing tool, and for moms it’s an endless supply of ideas (for dads I think it’s still a mystery, but they will get there)
Even now, I find myself wandering in and have to drag myself back out. I found watermelon sensory baths (that might be fun for ME), Myths about sensory issues, a mud and worm sensory sink, a sensory garden, reusing lotion, a soccer sensory bin, it goes on and on and on…. LOL, I even just found sensory painting with Goblin guts, there is something for every kids interest! Just on this one search a parent could find weeks worth of activities. Though I have to say you can’t be afraid to get your hands dirty on several of them.
Type almost anything into Pinterest and you will find amazing things! – but like I said black hole suck of time….
If your child is between the ages of 9 and 14 inclusive, FLL is a great thing to get involved in! Teams can be through a school, but also a parent or friend can coordinate a team. Registration is about to start!
1. National registration for Nature’s fury will open at Noon EST on May 6th. To register your team and get started, you can go to the official FLL registration website at gofll.usfirst.org. Please follow the steps presented on the website.
FIRST Lego League (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
2. FIRST has announced they will be offering Team Hardship Grants for the Nature’s Fury season. The grants are designed to aid teams that would otherwise be unable to participate in FLL without some assistance. If you are aware of a team that is beginning to form and may meet the criteria, please pass this information along to them. Anyone interested should contact your state coordinator.
Posted in education, FLL