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Top 5 Essential Computer Skills for Children

We live in a world dominated by technology. In this digital day and age, it is essential for kids to be digitally literate and skillful – this entails a keen understanding of technology and the appropriate use of it. Given that more educational and school platforms are shifting online, it would be wise for parents to start their children young and introduce them to essential computer skills early. This would allow your child to navigate the digital world safely and seamlessly.


In this article, we answer parents’ most pressing questions surrounding computer usage for their children, and recommend five computer skills that children should take up.



We live in a world dominated by technology. In this digital day and age, it is essential for kids to be digitally literate and skillful – this entails a keen understanding of technology and the appropriate use of it. Given that more educational and school platforms are shifting online, it would be wise for parents to start their children young and introduce them to essential computer skills early. This would allow your child to navigate the digital world safely and seamlessly.

In this article, we answer parents’ most pressing questions surrounding computer usage for their children, and recommend five computer skills that children should take up.

When is the right time to introduce your child to the computer?

Based on every family’s unique lifestyle, relationship with technology and exposure to computers, the answer to this question may vary. Generally, a good time would be when kids are:

· Old enough to know what a computer is

· Has access to computers in a school or childcare setting

· Has proper parental or caretaker supervision

This would generally fall between ages 3 and 6, with parents usually easing their children into computer use with educational computer games.

How to maintain internet safety?


The sheer size of the Internet begets some measures in place to ensure internet safety for your child before they gain access to a computer. The first step is to turn on your computer’s parental controls, or, better yet, to create a computer account specifically for children. These measures would help to filter out websites and content that are inappropriate. Additional firewalls and content blockers can also be set up as an additional layer of protection.

Parents should also set rules of conduct with their children when using the computer. The basic rules established on most Internet guides include:

· To never share personal information online.

· To avoid responding to emails, texts, or messages from strangers.

· To avoid posting or sharing photos online.

· To avoid clicking on links, opening attachments, or accepting gifts from strangers or anonymous people online.

· To never agree to meet someone you met online.

· To inform your parents or other trusted adults if you need help or see anything that scares, worries, or makes you uncomfortable.

These tips should be shared with children and repeatedly emphasised frequently.

What important computer skills should they master?

1. Master typing skills

Photo by Kaitlyn Baker on Unsplash

Typing is one of the most basic skills that remain ever relevant in these current times. Learning how to type fast on the keyboard in the early years helps to establish strong muscle memory, which would not only be helpful for children in submitting schoolwork digitally, but also later in life when exploring job opportunities. Given rapid advances in technology, quick typing skills are set to become even more important.

Specific programs such as Typing Club, Typing Instructor for Kids and Jungle Junior are fun and educational ways to help your children type faster in no time!

2. Learning to conduct online research and web browser navigation


Begin with the very basics that come as second nature to us parents. That includes covering concepts of URLs and address bar, links and hyperlinks, navigation buttons including refresh, back and forward, browsing tabs, bookmarks and history, how to download files, save images, activating plug-ins such as Adobe Flash, etc.

Once the basics are out of the way, parents can move on to guide their children in searching for information – whether it is for school projects, questions they have on their mind, or learn more information in general. This includes an introduction to search engines, online encyclopedias and conversely, sites to avoid. There should also be a crash course on fact-checking information and the concept of plagiarism and copyrights. It may even be helpful for parents to devise mini research assignments for your kids to put the skills they’ve learnt to practice!

3. Understanding email etiquette


While emails are no longer the preferred mode of communication amongst today’s youth, it is still valuable in many instances – not just in the future school, college and workplace, but also in sending and receiving enquiries, updates and information from businesses and official institutions. It is important for parents to highlight proper email etiquette, including the following pointers:

· The need to use formal language. That means to omit abbreviations, slang, casual language and emojis in the email body.

· The inclusion of a proper subject header, acceptable greeting and closing lines.

· The distinction between “reply”, “reply all” “CC” and “BCC” functions.

Choosing an email provider which downloads messages to your computer such as Outlook may be more child-friendly as it allows parents to download messages first, meaning that children do not have to open the Internet before reading their email. This helps to add an additional layer of Internet safety.

4. Using Microsoft Office


The Microsoft Office Suite features the most widely used computer tools that are indisputably important assets that one can have. It is used at home, schools, and offices daily to organise, handle and present data across a broad range of functions. Kids should be familiarised with the main Office programs, including:

· Microsoft Word – also known as the most popular word processing and document creator program. Children should be able to do the basic functions, including:

o Create, edit, format and save documents in Word

o Add tables and graphics to documents

o Change features of their text

· Microsoft PowerPoint – Children should be able to create basic slide decks for presentations in schools.

· Microsoft Excel – Save this for the older kids. Learning how to organize information in charts, graphs, and tables would be an invaluable asset for advanced learners in school!

5. Coding


Schools everywhere are encouraging kids to learn how to code, as STEM jobs are on the rise and technology is the future. Becoming proficient in coding will help kids understand the technology around them, and teach them patience, creativity and critical thinking. Some resources to start your child with his/her coding journey include:

· Daisy the Dinosaur – the most suitable app for young kids (from 4 years old) to understand basic conepts

· Move the Turtle – a handy iPad app for older kids (9-11 years old)

· Hopscotch – an iPad app that features video tutorials to help kids program games

· Kids Ruby – downloadable program to teach kids actual Ruby code

· Hackety Hack – a “sequel” program to Kids Ruby

Conclusion

That summarises the top 5 computer skills to introduce to your children, right here from this June holidays! The most important tip for parents is to be present – supervision is crucial for young kids to surf the Internet in a safe manner.


GENESIS CHILDCARE 1989



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Genesis Childcare 1989, one of the best Tampines Preschool and a good childcare in Tampines, advocates that every child is unique and precious who needs to be loved and cherished. In our Tampines childcare (Tampines Central), we have developed a curriculum which provides a bilingual learning experience, helps the children to learn the necessary skills and knowledge needed to help them successfully transit to Primary School with ease.


As one of the best childcare centre in Tampines since 1989, we are committed to nurturing our early learners holistically through various learning areas and positive learning dispositions. In our Tampines Preschool, we place a strong emphasis on the way our teachers facilitate and interact with the children.


Teachers from our childcare Tampines or Playgroup in Tampines are trained, qualified, passionate, dedicated, enthusiastic, caring and encouraging who love and empower each child to fulfil their potential to the fullest. Our Tampines Preschool professional team of preschool teachers has a good understanding of child development and learning principles. We apply them efficiently and set the stage to create a meaningful learning experience that supports your child's discovery.


The children in our preschool Tampines get to learn English, Chinese, Maths, Science, Music and Movement, Arts, Outdoor Play and cookery lessons. Our Preschool Tampines also provides balanced and nutritious meals for the children and helps the children to cultivate healthy eating habits.


We consistently create a positive and cozy environment that will give your child a sense of security which builds their self-confidence to explore the world around them in our good childcare in Tampines.

In our good childcare in Tampines, we have over 30 years of experience in nurturing thousands of infants, toddlers and preschoolers.


If you are looking for a good Tampines infant care or Tampines preschool or Tampines childcare near Tampines Central, do consider Genesis Childcare 1989.


Located alongside our childcare centre in Tampines is our Nurture Infant House. If you are looking for a good Tampines infant care or infant care in Tampines, do visit Nurture Infant House. It is for infants aged 2 months to 18 months old. You can learn more about our infant care Tampines here.


Lastly, would you like to visit our Genesis Childcare Tampines to find out more about our environment and setup as well as understand our operations by talking to our teachers and supervisor?


Book a school tour now! Click here to read our Google reviews too!


Genesis Childcare 1989 (Playgroup to Kindergarten 2)

Blk 433 Tampines Street 43 #01-63/65 S(520433)



Nurture Infant House (2 to 18 months Infants)

Blk 433 Tampines Street 43 #01-61 S(520433)



Opening hours: Monday to Friday (7am to 7pm) & Saturday (7am to 2pm)


Public Bus services: 8 / 21 / 28 / 29 / 293

Whatsapp: wa.me/6596664141

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