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Computers for Kids Who Are Too Young to Use the Mouse or Keyboard

For mommies - the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend that infants and children under age 2 should not watch Television or DVDs at all. For young kids, the time-limit is set to no more than 2 hours.

And it is probably time to remove that TV and DVD player from the bedroom. Researchers have found that 90% of children under age 2 and 40% of infants under three months watched TV regularly - majority of that inside the bedroom.

Aryaman Turns 2
My two-year old son is now a frequent visitor to my "blogging office" and does spend few minutes with me on the computer. Now he's too young to handle the mouse or keyboard so here's how I try to keep him engaged:

Self Running Flickr Slideshows - Flickr has a good collection of photo pools containing pictures of animals and birds from around the world. Each photo pool has a "View as Slideshow" link that will play all the group photos a a slideshow without intervention.

If you want to continue working while the kid is engrossed in the wildlife, open the slideshow on your secondary monitor while you work on the primary monitor screen. [Trick works only when you have dual screen]

Nursery Rhymes and Cartoon Movies on YouTube - Most video sharing sites like Google Video and YouTube have an extensive collection of English nursery rhymes and animation movies including Tom n' Jerry and Mickey mouse - Put these video in one playlist, click the "Play all videos" button and let kids enjoy the stuff.

Microsoft Screenpen - Sometime when you kid insists on using the mouse, get the Microsoft ZoomIt or ArtRage software. They are like virtual painting software and turn the computer screen into a drawing canvas where the mouse become the brush.

You can also save his "creative artwork" as an image, take a print and hang the painting on his bedroom wall. Earlier studies have suggested that ten minutes of computer exposure, three or four times a week, is a good guide.

Related: Parents Can Track Children Via Mobile Phones