South Australian parents are embracing online learning and say high speed broadband is a big help in preparing their kids for a competitive digital future, according to new research.
The nbn Digital Parenting Report found more than three quarters of Aussie parents understand the need to harness the Internet to continue their kid’s education beyond the classroom, at home.
The report also found 62 per cent of primary and secondary school students now watch online tutorials to assist with their homework.
In South Australia, 72 per cent of parents agree that high speed internet is important in allowing children to keep up with the demands of school work.
The report also found that of the parents they interviewed in South Australia:
- 76 per cent agree that the children learning at home online helps them with classes at school
- 77 per cent agree that new technology makes it easier for children to get their school work done
- 75 per cent of parents believe new technology makes it easier for children to learn at their own pace
- 64 per cent say new technology levels the playing field between different locations, and
- 55 per cent say new technology means children are less likely to be “left behind”.
Many schools now insist parents purchase tablets or laptops for their children as an integral part of their education.
Despite this, evidence suggests plenty of parents still feel guilty about their children spending time in front of a computer screen.
Children’s Technology and Brain Researcher, Dr Kristy Goodwin said:
“Parents should avoid feeling the ‘techno-guilt’ that comes with monitoring screen time and try to understand what content their kids are consuming online instead of focusing less on how many hours they are spending on it.
“Access to fast and reliable broadband via the nbn™ network is key in enabling our children to take advantage of online tools such as video tutorials and podcasts designed to encourage creativity and help prepare our children for the digital workforce.
“It will also help to ensure their screen-time can be maximised and isn’t wasted due to buffering or distractions.”
nbn SA & NT Corporate Affairs Manager Jill Bottrall said:
“As children go back to school today, we’re starting to see a real ramp up in the construction of the nbn™ network across South Australia.
“There is no doubt that our lives are becoming increasingly reliant on technology and a digital future and the nbn™ network is helping kids better access online educational tools.”
Parents, don’t feel guilty - Dr Kristy Goodwin’s tips for parents:
- Don’t obsess about quantifying your child’s screen-time - screen-time limits are important, but not the most critical factor to address how your child uses technology. Instead, focus on what your child’s doing when they’re online;
- Use technology with your child where possible – research confirms that co-viewing has educational benefits, whether you’re streaming TV or playing video games together. So help your child to really learn in the loungeroom by being present and interacting with them;
- Prevent the ‘digital zombie effect’ – ask your child about what they’re doing, creating and communicating online; encourage your child to create digital content (such as multimedia slideshows, digital books, podcasts, or videos) in addition to consuming digital content (for example watching You Tube content, or playing games);
- Parents can learn too – kids love teaching their parents! Remember your child might have more technical knowledge and skills than you do, but they don’t have the life skills and knowledge that you’ll necessarily have so work with them and learn from each other.
nbn is scheduled to start work rolling out the network to an additional 258,000 homes and businesses across South Australia in 2016.
Communities in South Australia expected to start construction in 2016 include large areas of Elizabeth, Gawler, Glenunga, Mt Gambier, Norwood, Port Pirie, Reynella, Salisbury, and Whyalla.
This will add to 112,000 premises that can already connect to the nbn™ network in this State.
Visit our nbn blog series to learn more about the how access to fast broadband is transforming the way Australians learn.
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Notes to editors
1The research included in the nbn™ Digital Parenting Report was commissioned by nbn and developed by Colmar Brunton, with a Australian sample size of 1001 parents across every Australian state and territory – November 2015.