Children more gadget savvy today

January 21st, 2011 - 6:11 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Jan 21 (IANS) Small children are a lot smarter and gadget savvy today than those of earlier generations — they know how to operate a computer mouse, make calls on mobile phones and surf websites with ease.But when it came to real-life matters, the picture was very different — only 11 percent could tie their shoe laces.

Just 48 percent knew their home address and only a third were able to write their first and last names.

The findings are based on a University of Southern California study of children in 42 families starting from 10 months old.

And, while seven out of 10 youngsters aged between two and five are comfortable playing online games, less than two in 10 could swim unaided, the Daily Mail reports.

According to the study, 23 percent of children between two and five can make a call on a mobile phone and a quarter can navigate between websites with ease.

One in five knew their way around smartphones or even an iPad. Two-thirds knew how to turn a computer on and 73 percent said they could work with a mouse.

The survey of 2,200 mothers in 11 countries by internet security company AVG found that in general, children in the UK were more ‘plugged in’ and had fewer real-life achievements than in other countries.

Parents are either too busy or too lazy to help their offspring to learn practical and physical skills - from riding a bike to tying their laces - often finding it simpler to make them sit in front of a screen.

Child development expert Sue Palmer in the UK said: “They get used to the quick fix and the easy rewards of communicating with technology and don’t learn how to invest the emotional effort that is necessary for real relationships.”

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