An Apple a Day

Little Man PlayingAs I mentioned in a previous post, media is limited in our home. Our children are only allowed TV and “free play” on devices from Friday evening until Sunday evening. Even then, they are limited to how much time they get. At times, it can become a little hard to uphold these rules; especially when we develop mobile apps.

My husband is part of Ayars Animation, a small company based in California that develops apps for Apple mobile devices. To date, they have completed four apps and are working on a fifth. Their first app was the classic story, Jack and the Beanstalk.iPod

Working with Ayars Animation has been loads of fun for him. He was mainly hired to handle the illustrations for the apps, but it has become much more. Now, he has become instrumental in helping to develop future apps and the fine tuning of details.

The Tree I SeeOne side effect of developing these apps has been that we are constantly testing them out. Our children are often called upon to check for “bugs” and crashes. While the kids have a blast with helping out their pop, they are taking in a little more media than we often would allow.

It also means that they are being exposed to the world of Apple. Our children know their way around any Apple device that is placed in their hands and can sync any handheld with a desktop. They know iTunes like the back of their hands and, unfortunately, are up to date on the latest and greatest kid apps available. Pirate Puzzles

We now have a large assortment of learning apps, strategy apps, game apps, and book apps; our collection growing larger every day. The minute their friends get a new app, the kids are anxious to try it out.

Cozmo's Day OffAs it is the school year, I still refrain from allowing them to play with media during the week. However, testing does need to be done. We are trying to find a balance between the two; helping out Pop and yet not have media overkill. It isn’t always easy, but we are learning as we go.

However… It is Sunday and the house is filled with the sound of technology. Now, can someone tell me how I am supposed to get the Angry Birds theme song out of my head?

16 thoughts on “An Apple a Day

  1. I wish I could help you on the Angry Birds theme! I finally had to tell my kids they weren’t allowed to play apps on my phone because they were using up all the battery charge because I couldn’t get that theme out of my head! All someone has to do is mention Angry Birds and I can hear the theme playing.

    As for media time, it’s interesting to see the contrast between your family and mine. W’ve got unrestricted media time, yet we don’t have very much in the way of media for the kids to get involved with. We don’t have mobile apps for the kids. We don’t have that many in the way of devices to play apps on, like an iPad or anything. The only thing they really have is a few video games and some movies. These get old quick, so we’ve never had to worry about too much media time. The kids get bored and would rather do their own things. I have to wonder how things would work if my kids were in the shoes of yours, where they were given all these great new electronic media apps to play and test out. Would we still be able to go on with unrestricted media, or would the media start to take over their lives? I wonder…

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    • I actually think the theme for Angry Birds is very catchy, it is just hard to get it out of my head when we are done playing.

      We don’t have video games and regular TV, just devices and movies; either way it is still a little hard. I too wonder what it might be like if we changed things up a little. The thing is… I like not having devices all week long. Good question though!

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  2. I keep my computer and ipad muted. I don’t like those things making noises or talking to me.

    I’ve been told Siri is coming out on ipad. She and I would not get along. That would drive me nuts having her talk to me all day. I’m not that lonely. I think I’d have to cut her tongue out. LOL

    I would disable that app like I mute the others. LOL

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  3. What a cool job to have, my kids love apps, but we only use the free ones. I think their dad has bought a few. I really like Starfall.com, my kids play on that often.

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  4. Angry Birds is new for us. Any new fad takes a while for me to think about and learn about before I make a decision to jump in. My hubby actually downloaded it first. I played for 4 hours the first night and had no idea it was 1 a.m.! Beanster only gets to play in the a.m. (when he’s not watching his educational PBS cartoons), and at night before he goes to sleep! By that time, the iPhone is nearly dead and I have to charge it so I get to read books and magazines that pile up during the week. It’s a nice trade-off. I try to make all of his tv, except Bugs Bunny, an educational experience, so I don’t feel so bad about what he watches. 🙂 The other good thing about Bean is that he likes regular books, so we don’t have a lot of computer time reading e-books.

    I’m glad to know that I’m not the only parent who limits media time!

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    • I think one of main reasons I like Angry Birds is that hidden in all that fun, you really are learning! The simple concept of trajectory is being formed into a concrete principle that has merit. It IS nice to know we are not alone!

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      • I just heard on the radio today of a professor who used Angry Birds in his class. All the kids were playing it while he was lecturing, so he decided to get them to build catapults to learn physics! Brilliant! Exactly why I want to homeschool!

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  5. I love this! We will try when we get our first tablet — haha, we’re behind the times…. I love that you do limited screen time as well. I only have a 2 year old so far, but it has been easy to keep him away from the screen — we let him watch golf or football with daddy on the weekends, but that has been it. He’s never even watched a cartoon, and I’m proud of that (maybe grandma has snuck one in during her babysitting time though….)! Maybe a Friday night cartoon could be in order for the future, but for now, he is content both playing on his own and being well-behaved in public, too.

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