When it comes to buying laptops for children, many opt for devices that are simple and easy to use. This may seem logical considering a child’s limited cognitive abilities but this is not necessarily be the best approach, children are extremely quick learners and although they may be hesitant at first, it usually take just a matter of days before the master a new tasks. Think about it, there are plenty of 7 or 8 year olds around that have computing abilities that exceed many adults.
With that in mind, if you are planning to get a laptop for kids over 3 years of age, try to steer clear of those ‘laptops’ that you find in Toys”R”Us. Those devices are more elaborate video games than actual computing platforms. Instead, try getting actual laptop computers for your child. You can set it up to make it a little easier to use. You can start with games and then slowly introduce them to other features on the laptop such as typing, surfing the web and sending emails. Starting your child early in using laptops may even give him or her a head start in school a couple of years later.
Windows Based Netbook
Chances are, your child will grow up into an environment that makes use of Windows based computing platforms so you might as well get them started early at a young age. Netbooks are essentially mini laptops (usually with 10-inch screens or smaller), with moderately powerful specs that are designed for light and casual use. Although not as popular as before, netbooks are still on sale in the market and are perfect first time laptops for children. They are affordable, tiny (suitable for tiny fingers) and extremely practical. Today, you can get one of these for less than $200. They also usually come in a variety of fun colors.
If you get one of these, you might want to set up parental control softwares on them as you wouldn’t want your child to stumble on anything non-child-appropriate material on the internet. If your child is very young, you can help them install some games on the netbook and place their shortcut icons on the desktop for easy access. Despite their lack of computing power, netbooks are after all, full-featured laptops. Besides using them for play, you can teach your kids to use them for ‘work’, such as designing and making a birthday card for daddy or mummy. Small Windows laptops would make excellent laptops for kids as they can be effectively used for both play and educational purposes.
Android and Apple Tablets and Laptops
If you want to get something that is more fun, you can opt to get an Adroid tablet or an iPad. Tablets, especially iPads are extremely easy to use thanks to their intuitive controls, making them perfect computing platforms for kids. While they are not exactly laptops in the traditional sense, you can always get fix it onto an external keyboard attachment, and voila, you have a laptop. With regards to Android tablets, there are various models of Android laptops out there that are designed specifically for kids. They are essentially 7 or 10-inch Android tablets that is built-in into a keyboard with trackpad. You can get one of these for around $170 or less.
Thanks to their touchscreens, tablets are extremely fun to use for children. There are literally hundreds of thousands of free games to choose from app store with many specifically designed for babies and toddlers. Another advantage of tablets is that you can easily make it more rugged and child resistant buying one of those very robust and heavily padded tablet casings. That way, you can leave your child to use the tablet unsupervised without worrying it accidentally being smashed into oblivion.
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