Is an iPod Touch suitable for an 8 year old? In my heart of hearts, I really don’t think so. I’d much rather see him playing with friends, or toys, or reading books. However I have to accept that what I see as age appropriate is a reflection of the fact that I grew up a generation ago, when a Merlin was the most threatening piece of electronic gadgetry around.
I agonised over this for quite a while, but in the end decided that we would get our eldest his much desired iPod Touch for Christmas, but with the following rules:
- It doesn’t go to bed with him at night
- It doesn’t go to school
- In term time, the same rules will apply for the iPod Touch as for the Wii – Friday to Sunday only
- He has an Apple ID for iTunes/the app store but he doesn’t know the password (i.e. I get to see what he’s downloading)
- He has an email address which is also set up on my computer for the moment
- I have used the IOS settings to manage the allowed content for Safari, apps, music and video (general/settings/restrictions)
- I have locked the Safety Mode on YouTube through Safari (you can do this by signing into your google account on the relevant device/browser, activating the lock, and then signing out again – this also enables & locks Safesearch on Google)
- I have set the filter to strict on the You Tube app (I haven’t figured out how to lock this yet – if there is a way please let me know!)
I’m hoping this is a sensible approach to letting an 8 year old loose with an internet enabled device. What do you think? Is it too control freakish? Or on the other hand should kids not have these things until they are older? And as always, If you’ve been there and done that, I’d welcome your accumulated wisdom!
Thanks for reading,