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Por fin YouTube lanza versión para niños: YouTube Kids

En Mundo de Mamá

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Excelente noticia que recibo hoy al leer que por fin YouTube ha lanzado la aplicación de YouTube para niños “YouTube Kids”, la misma aplicación a la que estamos acostumbrados pero que ahora contiene un alto nivel de filtros de contenido apto para nuestros chiquitos, como una plataforma mucho más amigable para ellos.

Aunque siempre me he declarado un tanto enemiga de la entretención por medio de tablets y teléfonos, esto podría llevarme a la reconsideración. Estos dispositivos no solo son objetos electrónicos sino a la vez un mundo de temas por descubrir a través de las aplicaciones que descarguemos en ellos, por esto me importa tanto lo que buscan y lo que encuentran.

Lo que había iniciado como un rumor, es ahora un hecho que va a facilitar la guía parental de nuestros hijos mientras buscan temas en audiovisual. Me ha pasado en veces anteriores, y fue esta una de las razones por las que decidí eliminar los dispositivos de a lista de objetos de entretenimiento para mis hijas, que por buscar temas totalmente ingenuos el resultado de la búsqueda era totalmente fuera de contexto o bien en sobre dimensión para su corta edad. Por ejemplo: la búsqueda de palabras clave como “maquillaje”, “halloween”, “galletas”, “baile”, “barbie”, etc. pueden llevarnos a resultados que han estado fuera de contexto para los niños.

La nueva aplicación YouTube Kids cuenta con una plataforma bastante amigable y posee características como:

  1. Un “timer” para dosificar la cantidad de exposición en el uso de la aplicación.
  2. Configuración de sonidos, una forma para mantener controlado el volumen de los sonidos de efectos, como el sonido de fondo de los videos.
  3. Opción para deshabilitar las búsquedas, de modo que lo que se encuentre sea limitado.

La aplicación por ahora está disponible únicamente para dispositivos de tipo tablet y teléfonos. Esperemos que esto entonces nos ayude a orientar mejor lo que nuestros chiquitos ven.

 

Extravagant kids’ birthday parties

Family edge. Mercatornet

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Kids. Their birthdays. The parties. Ahh, the dilemma. Because as pointed out a recent Slate article, a few balloons, a homemade cake and some Pass The Parcel – or in my case, my dad dressing up as a magician and wowing us with his tricks – just aren’t doing it anymore. Even the fancier celebrations of my childhood (McDonald’s party, anyone?) seem over and done with.

To be honest, the “extravagant kids’ birthday party” is something I hadn’t really thought about before reading this article. But in hindsight, I’ve definitely seen it. My younger siblings have been to parties where they’ve recorded themselves singing and brought home their personal CD; where Nerf guns were provided for entertainment; where mini makeovers took place. And in the more extreme cases that you hear about, parties are happening at ski resorts, or involve limo rides, or take place at home but with the help of an expensive stylist. And we’re not talking 21-year olds, we’re talking little munchkins!

Why is this happening? Is it the fault of the parents or the kids? Here’s what I think is going on:

Thinking that everyone’s doing it.

Let’s be real – I can’t be the only who’s seen at least 10 Frozen-themed birthday cakes this year. If parents aren’t stopping to think about whether some component of a party is unnecessary or extravagant, and if they can afford it, what’s going to stop them?

Outward show of being a good parent.

I doubt that this is intentional, but a birthday party is a chance to prove oneself as a good parent. It’s a public display of affection, if you will, where lavishness and unique entertainment may be taken as the degree of love the parents have for their child. And no parent wants to look bad in that department!

Kids are demanding it.

Kids are great, but a lot of them are spoilt these days. They expect a lot, and when they see what others kids have, they want it too – or more, or better. It’s hardly likely that they’re going to go to their friend’s theme park party and then be thrilled about staying at home for their own.

Looks better on social media.

What’s going to get more likes on Facebook – some kids with party hats on; or your five-year old in front of a professionally themed candy buffet and jumping castle? Sad, but true.

A question you might be pondering: is all of this a bad thing? Is it so bad to want to create memories of your child’s milestones, to spend a bit bigger on these special days? To be honest, I cannot judge the intentions of any parent, and every family has a different budget. But personally, I think there are more important things for kids than fancy parties. As long as a child is truly loved and cared for, and their parents have their best interests at heart, then maybe a big celebration is neither here nor there. What do you think?

 

Mom or Dad, Are You a Yeller? Better Bite that Tongue!

By Meg Meeker, M.D.

Kids who are yelled at by their parents are more likely to have depression and behavior problems, a new study in Child Development finds. This is no surprise, so why do a study?  I think we need studies like this so that academics can remind us parents to take our jobs seriously. I know that I do.

Words cut deeply—particularly the words that flow from a parent’s mouth to a child—whether that child is 6 or 66.

We listen to what our parents say to us because this is how we figure out who we are. We are wired this way from birth. As young children we scour our parents’ faces to figure out if they like what we are wearing, if they think the picture we colored is good enough, or if they like how fast we run on the soccer field. If they communicate that they like what they see, then we believe we are good. If they never pay attention to or berate us, then we believe we are no good. That’s how simple life is for a child. Even as adults, we never stop listening to our parents, because we are connected to them by a need-based love.

So when a parent screams at a child, the pain cuts deeply. Some parenting experts say that kids don’t hear parents scream because they tune them out. I completely disagree. Kids hear alright; they just pretend not to hear because they simply don’t know what to do with the hurt.

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