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I Let My Child 'Play' on Her iPad as Much as She Wants To

Her comfort and skill level with an iPad and related electronic devices puts her in a position to succeed. Our (my wife and I) leniency with how much time our daughter spends on her devices appears to have helped create a child who self-regulates her "screen time." Often, watching a video on YouTube serves as little more than a springboard to hours' worth of creative play time that doesn't involve the use of consumer electronics.

She's crafting. Building. Devising. Creating. The iPad -- and all it entails -- triggered that process. It certainly wasn't this easy to be productive and creative when I was a kid using pamphlets, books and, if I was lucky, some clumsy program on my Commodore 64 to play and pick up new skills.

And, there are times -- lots of times -- when my daughter simply wants nothing to do with her iPad. She'd rather kick back and listen to music, via Internet radio, most often served up through our Roku player. Or curl up with a good book. Or run around the house like a wild person. Or play with the cat. Or her hamster, which, by the way, she knows quite a bit about thanks to YouTube tutorials. As with AAPL, I'm thinking that's at least half an endorsement for an investment in GOOG.

Contrast this story with those of militant parents who place Draconian regulations on their kids' "screen time."

When some of these kids come into our home, they're akin to addicts on coke binges. They simply cannot pull themselves away from the tablet they brought with them or my daughter's iPad. In fact, this dynamic has led to my daughter, during playdates (I bleeping hate that word) with children who get very limited "screen time" at home, stating that she's had enough of the iPad.

By letting our daughter determine for herself how long she can spend on these screens, I really think my wife and I have a kid on our hands who largely uses them for enrichment. If that's not happening, she gets bored. Fast.

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