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How long do you let your kids use electronic devices for?

VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – With no end in sight to the teachers’ strike, your children will probably be logging more time than unusual on their gadgets.

But a surprising new revelation in a New York Times article may have you rethinking how much time you allow your children to do so. It turns out late Apple co-founder and CEO Steve Jobs was quite strict when it came to his kids screen time.

The irony is inescapable. The man who brought iPads and other technology to your children was limiting access to it in his own home, so they could learn in other ways.

Literacy advocate Pam Allyn is part of the BIC Kids program. She says there is a great benefit for youngsters to spend time with a pencil and paper.

“Children are using different parts of their brain and exercising those parts of their brains when they write by hand, practicing… visual motor [skills]. Printing the letters helps them with early recognition.”

Allyn says this “old-fashioned” method can also help with a child’s self-esteem.

“In terms of their own confidence — building creative skills — we are noticing that the children that are encouraged to write by hand from the very youngest ages are more free on the page; they are really interested in themselves as writers and sort of think of themselves as writers.”

Steve Jobs was not alone with his limited-at-home approach to technology; it turns out many other CEOs in the industry do the same. They say it fosters a different way of learning and also avoids pornography, bullying, and the risk of getting addicted to their devices.