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Survey: Fourth graders more tech-savvy than their parents on average

In the digital age, technology moves fast. Amid recurring updates and latest iterations, it can be easy to fall behind. A new survey details generational gaps in technology use.


Image: iStock/evgenyatamanenko

In recent months, the coronavirus pandemic has altered the way adults interact with technology on a daily basis. From Zoom meetings and messaging apps, organizations are using a vast suite of solutions to assist with remote workforces. At the same time, many schools have adopted distanced learning and elementary school children are collaborating remotely, screen sharing, and jotting on virtual whiteboards as part of the new online curricula.

A VTech survey sought to better understand the technology gap among age groups, the long-term effects of tech on education, career development, and more. Interestingly, on average, parents felt as though their child will exceed their own level of tech-savviness by the time the child enters the fourth grade, according to VTech.

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“When kids are introduced to technology at an early age, they become more comfortable and familiar with it, making it easier for them to adapt,” said Andy Keimach, president, VTech Electronics North America, in a press release. “Technology is an integral part of distance-learning, and with so many children learning from home this school year, it is more important than ever for kids to be fluent in technology.”

“Another benefit to children’s familiarity with technology at an early age is it allows them to express themselves in creative ways,” Keimach continued.

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Children’s electronic company, VTech, conducted a survey involving 2,000 parents of children between the ages of three and 12. The speed at which children “pick up” new technology impresses more than eight-in-10 parents (85%). A similar number of parents (82%) feel as though “growing up with technology” will allow their children to have increased opportunities compared to themselves.

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Additionally, (48%) feel as though technology will assist children in numerous career paths. Nearly half of respondents (47%) feel as though technology will enable children to further their education.

Aside from career development, parents also detail a number of creative benefits associated with exposing children to technology. For example, more than eight-in-10 parents said technology enables children to be “creative in new and different ways” and that these self-expressive outlets are important aspects of child development.

Approximately three-quarters (78%) believe it is important for technology to be introduced to children while they are young and nearly nine-in-10, feel as though technology will “shape who their child becomes.”

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