Cell Phones For Kids
Cell phones are not expensive now and, if you hunt around and do your research properly, so are local call charges. So should you include very young kids on your cell phone gift list? Well, it was not an option a decade or two ago, so this is a new dilemma - something else for parents to be concerned about.
Or is it? There was no opportunity for cell phones for kids, because cell phones did not exist. Then until a decade ago they started to become cheaper. Nowadays, it appears hard to justify not giving your children cell phones. The main reason why parents like to give their children cell phones is for security.
Are there more risks for children now or does it only seem that way? Children have been walking to school for a hundred years, so why is that a difficulty now? Increased traffic is one reason cited, but inner cities were perilous when horses and carriages were flying around corners too and there were not so many policemen and no traffic lights then either.
Or are we more scared because the media likes to report bad news, so we are more conscious of these threats to children? Fifty years ago, my mother told me never to accept lifts from strangers. Why is that basic advice not enough anymore?
Some people say that there are more predators than ever, because we have been poisoned by junk food, pollution and sex on TV. Whatever you believe, there is no denying the fact that parents are very concerned about their children when they are out of sight.
One pretty cheap manner of easing these worries is to give your kid a cell phone. This is not a bad thing. It could even encourage your child to get into technology, because you can instruct your child how to personalize the phone with wallpaper, screen savers, ring tones, themes and profiles.
There are two ways to go with cell phones for kids. You could either get a pay-as-you-go phone so that the phone call budget is under your control or you could buy a cell phone family plan so that there are free calls between phones on the family network.
For safety reasons, it is best not to give your child a cell phone that is able to go on the Net. It is also a safe idea to get them one that cannot take photos. Most of the perceived threats to kids come from the Internet and the SMS (text messaging) of pornography.
If you buy a cell phone for your child, buy one that is only that - a cell phone, for making telephone calls in emergencies - but not one that is also a camera, video camera or an Internet console. A simple phone will give you the best of both worlds: safety for your child, without putting him or her at even more danger.