The burning question these days is, “should you give phones to children with special needs?” Well, many think that providing phones is not appropriate for children, regardless of their condition. However, our take is a bit different.
You may think that giving phones may open the road to the grave dangers of the online world. This may be true, but you should know why it is important for your special needs child to have a smartphone.
Why Should A Special Child Carry a Smartphone to school?
Smartphones can potentially work for the betterment of the lives of special needs children. How so? Well, this gadget provides them with a mode for greater independence and self-control.
One of the advantages of using a smartphone is the ease of communication. Both parents and children are just a tap away from one another. Instant contact with the parent helps the child feel secure on their own.
Getting A Phone For Your Special Child? These 10 Tips Might Help
If you have made up your mind, keep these tips in mind to make the best out of this situation.
Do not choose any phone other than an iPhone.
Apple has greater accessibility to disable needs compared to android. Many special children are familiar with the iPad concept and how it works, so there will be no issue in teaching them this system.
Do not buy expensive models.
Generally, iPhones are not cheap. However, you can get a pretty sizable discount on getting an older version instead of the latest.
Social and physical safety are both very important. Set up a pin to use certain apps that require location or sensitive information so that there is no creeper in your house at am.
Get rid of apps like YouTube.
Unfortunately, YouTube is somewhat of an addictive application that hogs lots of time.
Location access set on denied.
Smartphones come up with a pre-loaded location feature that shows where you are. This is both a blessing and a curse. The benefit is that you can get a hold of your child anytime you’d want. At the same time, others could potentially see your child’s location too.
Access To App Store
The good thing is that you need to enter a password anytime making a purchase or download a free app. Do not tell your child the passcode, and you are good to go.
Video chatting is an issue. However, you have the option of asking for a permit on the text before connecting. This option comes in handy to take control.
Getting familiar with the gadgets is not easy and certainly 2x difficult with a special child. Practice patience and give time to get the hang of it.
Therapy is incredible. You can ask the therapist to incorporate technology-friendly exercises to teach the child about their appropriate use.
Be friends with your child, talk to them, and communicate about the rights and wrongs of using a phone and the reason why it is given to them.
Give your child a phone and let them know that you are there for them. Some children may feel a sense of abandonment in school; let them know you are a tap away.