Tanya took her younger brother to a kid’s birthday party where kids from the age group of 5-7 had come and she was surprised when a little kid came walking towards her and asked for her Facebook id. Something that was surprising for her was that a seven year old was asking a seventeen year old for her Facebook id. That’s when she started wondering that when she was seven, the only source of entertainment for her was coloring books, soft toys, cartoons, skipping and story books. Is the scenario changing so fast that children in the age group of 5-7, who should have been reading comic books, playing outside are now surfing internet and that too for not playing video games but for social networking? Why would a child need a social network of his own? Are there no more toys or coloring books or comics available to children that now they’re in a need to join social networking sites for their pass time and entertainment? Moreover Tanya also heard the conversation of two boys who were discussing about the comments they left at each others’ status on Facebook and they thought it to be ‘cool’ and which again left her wondering that when she was at those kids’ age she would discuss about cartoons and comics and would tell interesting stories to her friends and they would spend a quality time together rather than creating a virtual world of their own. They grew up in the real world, had real fun and excitement, their fun was not limited to chatting and posting comments on people’s statuses. Its not bad being on social networking sites at this age, sometimes it develops you mentally but it stops your growth physically and for a healthy body both are essential. Children who play outside and spend a quality time with their friends develop mentally as well as physically.
The reason why we say that it’s not advisable for small children to gain such access of networking sites is because, these sites are addictive, specially for young minds and in the process a child tends to ignore the real world around him and its also dangerous because sometimes children come across some adult stuff while surfing internet which can spoil their mental growth and leaves a bad effect on them. If one gains access to internet, one gains access to all the happenings in the world, he gets to know about stuff that he shouldn’t at that age. Its good to give your child enough freedom for his development but it should be ensured that the development is taking place in the right direction at the right age. Today we find 4th graders and 3rd graders abusing like anything, such things need to be prevented and checked. For this, proper counseling by parents and having a check on your child’s company is advisable and for parents it is also advisable not to become a spy for their kids, its good to have a watch at them but from a distance. But this changing scenario leaves us wondering, that a time would come when a primary wing teacher would be teaching F for Facebook and Y for Youtube. And a child who would grow up in this scenario would later tell his children ” When I was seven, I was on Facebook”