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The student news site of Colonia High School

The Declaration

The student news site of Colonia High School

The Declaration


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How Old Should Your Child be For their First Smartphone?

There is much controversy over what age is a good age to give a child their first smartphone. There are many reasons why parents are often discouraged from giving their young child a smartphone. There are also many reasons why parents may think it is a good thing to introduce smartphones to their children at a young age. So, what is a good age at which you could give your child their first smartphone?

The main concern that many parents have about giving their child a smartphone is that it will pose a constant distraction. It will constantly divert the child’s attention away from listening and paying attention to what their parents have to say in favor of playing games and playing around on social networking sites. In a sense, these ideas are not very far off from reality. A smartphone is basically a whole new world; it can be very hard, especially for an inexperienced child, to revert away from consistent distractions. During the early years of a child’s life, it is very important for the child to maintain a connection with their parents and to learn from them. Some feel that the presence of a constant distraction can have a negative effect on the bond established between young children and their parents. Some also are concerned that the child, who now has internet access on their smartphone, will be more-likely to listen to comments posted online of which the stranger has no idea what they are about.

A smartphone, while providing access to games, social networking sites, and other activities which people can enjoy, is a tool; a utility that has the capability to connect to the internet and to retrieve any published information the user requests. Smartphones are an essential part of many businesses for this reason: they allow workers in a company to communicate with each other via email in regard to important tasks. Even adults in general are independent and a smartphone allows them to manage tasks such as paying bills on time and communicating with companies from which they need information. Young children, on the other hand, are not independent, and are not responsible for handling tasks such as those that are handled by their parents. Thus, a young child does not have a real need for a smartphone at this point in their lives; it would be used almost entirely for games, social networking, and other leisurely activities, none of which are real necessities for which a child would actually need their own smartphone. Indeed, smartphones do have educational purposes, such as being used for learning-games for young children. However, this alone isn’t enough of a reason to buy a child their own smartphone. A child can use one of their parents’ smartphones for playing learning-games. Also, because it is the parent’s smartphone, which they seek to use to complete various tasks of their own, they will be able to keep better track of their child’s smartphone usage than they would be able to if the child possessed their own smartphone.

In addition, because a smartphone is capable of doing so many advanced tasks, it carries a large cost: about $200 to $300 on a binding contract, and about $650 without a contract agreement. This is a lot of money to spend for something that a child doesn’t actually need, and there are so many more important things that that money could be put towards, for both the child and the adult. In addition, young children tend to not be very good at keeping track of their things, and if a child’s smartphone were to become lost or stolen, the child’s parents would lose a lot of money.

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So, what is a good age to give your child their first smartphone? The main reason why many are afraid to give a child a smartphone at a young age is that they worry that their child will not be aware of the responsibility that comes with having one. However, when the child does become an adult and becomes independent, a smartphone will be a very practical utility for them to have and utilize. Thus, keeping in mind both of these points, I would say that a good age to give a child their first smartphone is during their high school years. High school is a time in people’s lives where friends and socializing become very important. It is also a time when students become responsible for completing homework in advanced classes in a punctual manner. Some high school students even have jobs. At this age, a child can become fully acquainted with all of the abilities that a smartphone has and can learn to be responsible with them along the way. Also, by providing a high school student with a smartphone at this time of their lives, they can become accustomed to the way that the technology works and can become better prepared for their future, where the ability to use technology plays a large role in people’s lives.

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How Old Should Your Child be For their First Smartphone?