Your Child & Computers – some FAQ’s

– Amol Arora
Amol, a software engineer is our tech-xpert and is the head of the technology division at SHEMROCK

Should I buy a computer for my child ?.. is it a necessity ? if yes, how should I ?
Wondering whether and how your child can benefit from this new techno environment ?.. Well the best way to embark on this journey of taking your child through this enjoyable techno-journey is buying a computer at home. Most people shy away from buying thinking that computers are not a necessity but a luxury. But we are not far from the day when computers will be an absolute necessity (a fact everyone accepts). Now just think, way back in internet history (say 3 years back !!) this hype and buzz was nowhere to be seen and the way we are going, you surely wouldn’t want yourself or your child to be left behind. So call up your neighborhood assembler or that distant cousin of your friend who assembles computers. You could even go in for finance of the computer for as low as 0% rate of finance ( check out the classifieds in the local newspaper) or you could go in for a branded computer.

I have a computer at home, how do I introduce my little one to it ?
Well if you have finished the above step and bought a computer at home, start by taking your little one and letting him feel the mouse and see how the cursor moves around. You’ll be amazed to see how fast he picks up the connection between the mouse and cursor. Remember you should be comfortable with the computer and not paranoid about the thing and be relaxed, so he feels reassured about the whole exercise. Now, side by side explain to him the main parts monitor, keyboard, mouse, and the computer (or C.P.U. is he is old enough to learn that with much effort). Let him click the mouse and tell him that there are two keys ( or three as the case may be ). If he clicks on anything that makes some properties, windows or anything weird pop up just carefully put your hand on the mouse and close the thing so that no damage is done. Remember to close all your important work that you were doing on the computer (if!) Never react on impulse at anything he does, be cool about the whole thing. An important thing that has to be overcome for your child to be comfortable is his fear of doing something that could make the computer go kaboom!.. Encourage him to explore and see what happens on doing what but it is important to supervise him during all his initial escapades as we know that this is a complicated machine and does start behaving strangely for the slightest of reasons !! Also your child will need you around whenever a window pops on the slightest click !

I tried to introduce my child to computers but he seems to be scared, and doesn’t really enjoy it ?
On one hand some children feel very comfortable with the idea of handling a computer on the other hand some still don’t get over the fear (computer-illiterate grown ups grumbling about the new generation idiot box and its kids doesn’t make matters either !! ) A sure shot way to get the child to overcome his inhibitions is that his kindergarten school, where they should be having a multimedia system. Under the presence of his teacher he feels assured that there is an expert (how many times have we heard from older kids you don’t know mama, ma’am told me to do is this way not your way !!), also having his friends who fell comfortable with the idea working and enjoying on the system arises the feeling of not wanting to be less than anybody (betchya cant do this kind of thing !! ).

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