Paul and the Internet

Paul loves his macI’m a web geek, my wife is a (hot) web geek, and my kids are web geeks. If you don’t have young kids I don’t think you really understand what I mean by “our kids are web geeks.” So here is a visual for you. Paul, who turns 5 next week, navigates the web very well.

Paul can launch Firefox, click the address bar, and type in the URL of his favorite websites. From there he can completely navigate these sites. This includes some relatively complex things like typing in user names and password and printing documents. Here’s the catch… Paul can’t read. He is 4 years old.

Imagine all that Megan can do? She is 7 and has mastered browsing the internet, google, and can even launch various programs like Word. One of her favorite things is to write letters, play with the fonts, print them out, and hand them to her friends.

Sidenote to educators. You need more computers. While my kids may be slightly above the norm you need to step up both the rollout of computer time and the quality of projects you have them do. In first grade Megan would come home and say “I hate computer time. I already did everything at home and was bored.” Yeah, better step it up there to keep her enthusiasm. I don’t care that everyone doesn’t have broadband internet and everyone doesn’t have a computer at home. Educate my kid or you’ll lose her attention. And upgrade the teachers. Got a teacher that doesn’t want to use the computer? Fire ’em. Seriously. My kids don’t need teachers who were good twenty years ago. They deserve a teacher who will educate them for the future. Fire ’em and hire someone who can teach. Do it today. Then you’ll see your precious scores go up. Deal?

3 Websites ruling the roost this summer

#1 Club Penguin

#2 Webkinz

#3 Cartoon Network

How do the do this? Just like web browsers are smarter these days, wed design education is smarter as well. The operative word these days is “Interactive media design” or “IMD” for short. 






6 responses to “Paul and the Internet”

  1. Matthew McNutt Avatar

    Do you monitor them when they’re online, have protective blocks or anything like that?

  2. adam mclane Avatar

    Nope. Any time they want to go to a new site they have to ask. We’ve talked to them about the dangers of Google as well. Megan is generally doing simple searches like “cat” or something like that. When they are really looking for something they come and ask us for help.

    Also note that their mac is in the kitchen… when 50% of our days are spent.

  3. Matthew McNutt Avatar

    When we move I’m planning on setting up a computer for my kids to use (oldest is six); they have fun playing with our laptops, but it’s time for them to start learning on their own computer that I won’t freak out about every time they touch it! I’m doing the same thing, though – keep it in a high traffic communal area of the house. It blows my mind that I’ve known people with young kids that have their own computers in their bedrooms with high speed internet access and no blocks. It’s just begging for trouble!

  4. adam mclane Avatar

    Agreed. I don’t think kids should have computers in their rooms. TVs are fine IMO, computers are a different animal. I would call our kids computer time “mostly supervised.” It also helps for them to see mom/dad using computers in public areas of the house as well. I work from home right now, and though I’m in a bedroom the door is always open and everyone comes in and out all day.

  5. Kim Avatar

    Our school has caught on and introduced “study Island”,an online site for the kids to practice their subjects according to grade. Its a great way to get them to study over the summer. Each school has to set up their site and the children get their own user name and password.

  6. Dave Luke Avatar

    i’m real proud of them. when i have kids i want them to have mastered photoshop the time they are 11

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