Stories about: smartphones

Mobile Mamas: Parenting in the smartphone age

Young moms are 18% more likely to have a smartphone

I’m at the age where many of my old friends are new parents. They’re a pretty diverse bunch, but one thing they all have in common is how often they use technology as a parenting tool. When we get together as a group, favorite apps and websites are traded like old family recipes; cute pictures of the kids are emailed and shared on Facebook, sometimes while sitting right next to each other. And almost all of this digital connectedness happens on their phones.

At first all this mobile mothering struck me as odd, but I’m now learning that this is fairly standard these days. According to a new report from BabyCenter, which polled over 5,000 American mothers, today’s moms are 18 percent more likely to have a smartphone than other people. In fact, over half of the women polled said they bought their smartphone as a direct result of becoming a mom.

So what is it about modern motherhood that clicks so well with smartphones? According to Lois Lee, MD, MPH, mother of a 4 and 8-year-old, and proud iPhone owner, the mobile mama phenomenon isn’t the result of changes in motherhood, but an indication that technology has finally caught up with the whirlwind pace of moms.

“Life can be pretty fast paced. To keep up, a mother needs to be good at multi-tasking,” says Lee. “Smartphones can be a great reference tool because they provide access to information in a quick and convenient medium. It’s easy to see why they’re so popular with parents.”

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Are smartphone apps in the classroom a good thing?

Michael Rich, MD, MPH is Children’s media expert. He is the director of Children’s Center on Media and Child Health. Take a look at his blog archive or follow him on Twitter @CMCH_Boston.

Michael Rich, MD, PPH
Michael Rich, MD, PPH

Last week he wrote about how Lady Gaga’s music may influence children not old enough to understand her provocative images and lyrics. This week he addresses a reader’s questions on cell phone applications in the classroom.

Q: What is your take on smartphone apps being used in the classroom? I know a lot of schools are using them now, and I’m not sure what to think about it.

-Smartphones for Smart Kids?, in Somerville, MA

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