Association of Teachers and Lecturers: iPad addiction stops infants from using building blocks

Kids can "swipe a screen" but don't have the "manipulative skills to play with building blocks."
By Evan Bleier   |   April 16, 2014 at 12:22 PM   |   Comments

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LONDON, April 16 (UPI) -- The Association of Teachers and Lecturers is warning that iPad addiction is leaving an increasing number of British infants able to "swipe a screen" but unable to "play with building blocks."

According to the ATL, overexposure to wireless devices is leaving many kids without the necessary motor skills to do much except use tablets, computers or smartphones.

The association also claims that some “older children were unable to complete traditional pen and paper exams because their memory had been eroded by overexposure to screen-based technology.”

The ATL recently held its annual conference in Manchester.

“I have spoken to a number of nursery teachers who have concerns over the increasing numbers of young pupils who can swipe a screen but have little or no manipulative skills to play with building blocks or the like, or the pupils who cannot socialize with other pupils but whose parents talk proudly of their ability to use a tablet or smartphone,” teacher Colin Kinney said while addressing the conference.

Mark Montgomery, a teacher from Northern Ireland, advised parents to turn off their Wi-Fi connections at night to prevent kids from staying up late to play games online.

“In the same way we can use a brick to either break a window or build a house, digital technology can be used for good or bad, and teachers can and should help their pupils make positive choices so they have positive experiences,” Montgomery said.

[The Telegraph]

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