digital nativesI am raising digital natives and I love it. Technology is a big part of our lives. My brother-in-law once jokingly asked: “Is there a pen in this highly digitalized household?”

“iPad” was among my now 2-year old’s first 50 words. When we Skype with my parents, sometimes my 4-year old gets tired and tries to swipe my father’s image away because she thinks that my laptop has a touchscreen.

There are many ways to approach digitalization. Some parents, bloggers and researchers focus on the negative impact digital technology (and technology in general) can have on our lives. They give tips on reducing screen time, warn against oversharing and treat technology as something that needs to be tightly controlled.

Others are amazed by the opportunities that technology offers us. They mention the community- building aspects of social media platforms, the opportunity to access information everywhere and at any time, and remark that our lives have been made much easier by digital technology.

Where do I stand on this? More in the technology-is-awesome camp.

As an expat, I appreciate the possibilities to not only hear my parents’ voices, but to also see them- and they can see the children. I can use my iPad to do yoga with the children, and to connect with them that way. We don’t have a TV, but instead we use our computers to watch TV series and movies, and read the news. I love taking pictures and I have a digital SLR. That way, I can take tons of photos to choose the very best. And I haven’t even touched on the great advantages I get from blogging. My hands rebel when I try to draw or paint, but my computer allows me to do just that.

I view technology as a tool that can be used to our advantage without taking control over our lives. I think that there is a time and place for everything. I love the term “digital natives”. Just as our children can teach us how to speak another language, we can learn to use all these wonderful devices and find delight in using them.

On the other hand, we can teach children to use technology and social media responsibly. I also think that we can teach them the world of paper books and sounds without a picture, and the world outside of the house rather than the world inside of their devices.

To me it is obvious that technology has much to offer in terms of education and play. But I believe that through technology we not only can connect with a device, but with our children (and grandchildren!) as well.

What is your approach to modern technology? Do you love it or hate it? 

This is an original post to World Moms Blog from our writer and mother of two in the Netherlands, Olga Mecking.

The photograph used in this post was taken by the author.

Olga Mecking

Olga is a Polish woman living in the Netherlands with her German husband. She is a multilingual expat mom to three trilingual children (even though, theoretically, only one is trilingual since she's old enough to speak). She loves being an expat, exploring new cultures, learning languages, cooking and raising her children. Occasionally, Olga gives trainings in intercultural communication and works as a translator. Otherwise, you can find her sharing her experiences on her blog, The European Mama. Also take a while to visit her Facebook page .

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