Surprising Benefits of Technology on Kids' Development

Surprising Benefits of Technology on Kids’ Development

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I have never been a “pro-technology” Mom 🤷‍♀️ But after some research, it turned out that there are some surprising benefits of technology on kids’ development!

Honestly, my Daughter asked for a phone for some time now, but with her Father, we did not really see how she would use it in a way that is acceptable for us too, so it was out of the question. 

But… and there is always a “but” when you are raising kids 😅 we went a few weeks ago on a Mother-Daughter trip. Just the two of us. And on my phone basically all our tickets, addresses, and so on.

My Little One wanted to take some photos in a beautiful park where we were walking, so she borrowed my phone… then we visited a castle and borrowed it again. It was fine, except I freaked out when she held the phone over the fence – with huge depths underneath. 

This was the point when I realized she now has some legit reasons to have her own phone – at least when we are traveling 😂

And this is when I started my research on technology and child development 😊

Are you also thinking about the right timing of getting a phone to your kids? Or simply interested in the benefits of technology in child development?

Check out what I have found!😊

What are the Pros and Cons of Technology for Children?

Let’s dissect the digital dilemma:

Positive Effects of Technology:

  • Educational Boom: Thanks to educational apps and interactive media, young children have lots of learning opportunities at their fingertips. It’s like having a virtual classroom right in your living room. (Well, many families around us, who had school-age kids in 2020 literally had a virtual classroom in their living rooms 🙈😅)
  • Social Connection: With video calls and social media, children can maintain relationships with family members and friends, regardless of distance. It’s like having a family reunion without leaving the house. (Keeping touch with grandparents living further has never been easier!)
  • Tech Skills for Life: In today’s digital age, early exposure to technology can cultivate essential digital literacy and prepare children for future careers. It’s like giving them a head start in a race they didn’t even know they were in. (What I taught my Daughter quite early was how to call for help on the phone if she is with only one adult anything would happen to him/her.)
  • Creativity Unleashed: Technology serves as a canvas for creative expression, whether through digital art, music composition, or video editing. It’s like having a never-ending art studio right on your tablet. (As my Little One loves drawing, she already had the chance to try how it feels to draw on a Wacom Tablet, which was a whole new experience in terms of creating art.)

Negative Impacts:

  • Excessive Screen Time: Spending too much time in front of digital devices can lead to sedentary behavior and health issues. It’s like trying to tear a kid away from their favorite video game – they’re glued to the screen. (We experienced it during the first week of Covid lockdowns… which led to a 9-month screen-free period before we re-introduced screen time in baby steps.)
  • Cyber Risks: The online world poses risks such as cyberbullying and exposure to inappropriate content, necessitating parental vigilance. It’s like navigating a minefield where personal information is the treasure. (I recently started researching cyber risks – might come up with a  post about it too, if I find some useful information!)
  • Social Skills Struggle: Overreliance on technology can impede children’s social development and interpersonal relationships. It’s like forgetting how to have a face-to-face conversation in a world dominated by text messages.
  • Tech Addiction: Just like adults, children can become addicted to technology, which can negatively impact their mental well-being and overall health. It’s like battling an invisible foe that lurks behind every screen.

How Does Technology Positively Affect Child Development?

The good news? There is scientific evidence that technology has positive effects on child development!

A study about the Positive Effects of Digital Technology Use by Adolescents examined

“the research literature published from 2012 to 2022 on the relationship between increases in adolescent consumption of digital technologies and its impact on multiple areas of development, with a focus on how adolescent immersion in an increasingly ubiquitous digital world engenders positive outcomes in terms of brain, cognitive, and social-emotional development.”

The study was published in 2022 and systematically checked all related scientific literature of the previous 10 years. It used “a nationally representative survey among a random sample of tweens (8- to 12-year-olds) and teens (13- to 18-year-olds) in the United States”, so their findings can be reassuring for parents (like me 😅) willing to find out more about the effect of technology on kids and make their family rules on device usage based on an educated decision.

The most interesting findings – at least for me – were the following:

  • digital media usage among teens is up nearly 17% since the pandemic (which was not that long time ago…);
  • the largest increase was in watching videos;
  • in general, boys use more screen media than girls, and they also play more video games;
  • girls enjoy social media more than boys do.

And what about the positive effects?

The study focused on three main categories, video games, internet use, and social media:

1. There is a positive association between time spent playing video games 

  • and increases in the volume of gray matter in various parts of the brain (e.g., hippocampus, prefrontal cortex);
  • and increases in performances in tasks requiring selective attention, working memory, and visual-motor integration.

2. Internet use 

  • contributes to task completion and skill competencies;
  • increases the ability to think creatively and reflect on social relationships.

3. Social media 

  • facilitates social connection, identity development, and positive emotions;
  • enhances friendship quality, perception of social support, connectedness.

10 Surprising Benefits of Technology on Kids’ Development

So what are the 10 most surprising benefits of the use of technology on kids’ development?

1. Enhanced Language Skills: Through interactive language learning apps and online resources, technology helps children develop proficiency in foreign languages, opening doors to global communication and cultural understanding.

2. Improved Attention Span: Contrary to popular belief, certain interactive games and educational apps have been shown to enhance children’s attention spans by engaging them in focused, task-oriented activities.

3. Cultural Exploration: Digital platforms provide children with opportunities to explore different cultures through virtual tours, interactive museums, and multimedia experiences, fostering empathy and appreciation for diversity.

4. Active Role in Learning: Technology empowers children to take an active role in their own learning journey by providing access to personalized educational content and resources tailored to their interests and learning styles.

5. Development of Executive Functioning Skills: Educational games and digital tools that require planning, decision-making, and problem-solving contribute to the development of executive functioning skills crucial for success in academics and beyond.

Surprising Benefits of Technology on Kids' Development

6. Promotion of Physical Health: Innovative technologies, such as wearable fitness trackers and gamified exercise apps, encourage children to stay active and maintain healthy lifestyles in a digitally immersive world. Interactive technology, like motion-based gaming consoles (I personally used to love the Nintendo Wii years ago when it was a big thing! 😅), encourages physical activity while still engaging young minds. 

7. Social Skills Enhancement: Virtual reality experiences and online gaming platforms provide opportunities for collaborative problem-solving and teamwork, fostering social skills and interpersonal relationships in digital environments.

8. Accessible Educational Resources: Technology bridges educational gaps by providing access to online courses, educational videos, and digital libraries, ensuring that children from all backgrounds have equal opportunities to learn and grow. Educational video games and apps turn learning into an adventure, fostering cognitive development while kids have fun. It’s like sneaking veggies into a delicious smoothie – they don’t even realize they’re learning! (It can work pretty well with practicing otherwise boring stuff like, multiplication times tables…)

9. Promotion of Creativity: Digital tools, such as music composition software and graphic design programs, unleash children’s creativity by providing avenues for self-expression and artistic exploration.

10. Preparation for Future Careers: Exposure to technology from a young age equips children with essential digital literacy skills and familiarity with emerging technologies, preparing them for future careers in an increasingly digital workforce.


Whether you are a pro-technology parent or not, it is good to know both the advantages and disadvantages of what technology might bring to your family.

We try to find a balance between using technology and enjoying its benefits and keeping it at a safe level.

If you are interested I will keep you updated on how introduction to her new own mobile device will work out with my Daughter 😁

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