Monday, November 21, 2011

Review: the ultimate protective cases to let the family iPad between the hands of your kids

Some of you will probably get a "family iPad" this Christmas. So, we thought it may be about time to release a post about top protective cases for the iPad / iPad2. 

Besides having the family iPad insured and laying down a few ground rules, you may also want to consider investing in a protective case. We conducted our own web search and found a few references that seem to be solid, fun and not too expensive. 
Our research about the best protective cases for the iPad is by no means exhaustive!  We encourage you to look around for what’s best suited for your situation and your pocketbook.  And when it comes to our top picks, it’s important that we make it clear that we don’t have any partnership or professional affiliations with the manufacturers of those products.  We hope to hear from you and add your suggestions for cases that meet children specific needs and requirements. 
Below is a short-list of our preferred protective cases for the iPad so far: 

For its funny design: iGuy for iPad by (*)speck - $39.95

For its colours and "gripability": Big Grips Frame by KEM Ventures, Inc. - $49.95 for both frame & stand 

For its funky design and ability to absorb shocks: iBallz by Friendly Integration LLC - $19.95 

Because it's a protective case and art table in one: LightBoard, the draw + write + play-with-your-iPad case - $39.99  

For its colours, materials (silicone insulation and durable polycarbonate) and screen protector: Aegis / Kraken hybrid series by Trident - $39.95 & 49.95 

For its ability to be attached to car headrests: Ektopad Silicon Case by üzibull

Found on The WaterGuard Waterproof Case from Trendy Digital - $19.99 

..."the last line of defense against geek’s worst nightmare: liquids which can be poured by mistake onto his beloved gadgets."

Picture: CNET TV

A soft plastic cube that bounces - Boing Boing! Seen at #CES2012 (release in March): the Inflatable Cube from CTA Digital - $34.99 
Click here for a demonstration by CNET TV.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Updated: The AAP - American Academy of Pediatrics' recommendations about kids and media use

The APP recently updated their 1999 policy statement that strongly discouraged the use of media for kids aged under 2. They remain cautious and write that the educational benefits of programs are still unproven for kids younger than 2 years:

Research has found that certain high-quality programs have educational benefits for children older than 2 years. Children who watch these programs have improved social skills, language skills, and even school readiness. However, the educational merit of media for children younger than 2 years remains unproven despite the fact that three-quarters of the top-selling infant videos make explicit or implicit educational claims. To be beneficial, children need to understand the content of programs and pay atten- tion to it. Children older than 2 years and those younger than 2 years are at different levels of cognitive develop- ment and process information differently.

As mentioned by David Kleeman - President of the American Center for Children and Media, the AAP did not suffenciently emphasize the diversity in children's development and learning circumstances:

there are valuable insights in the report -- particularly regarding background TV and the value of play, as well as the admonition that media makers not market hoped-for educational outcomes to anxious parents.
 [...] AAP's official "Tweet" of the study was "AAP says babies and toddlers should learn from play, not screens." They didn't say "learn from play more than screens" or even "learn from play, limit screens."  
[...] true for children's media -- not all screens and not all content are created equal.                        

For the AAP statement's abstract and full text:
- American Academy of Pediatrics (2011) Media Use by Children Younger than 2 Years 

Interesting reactions to the AAP statement: 
- David Kleeman (2011) Children and Media: Pediatricians' Monolith Myth
- Moms with apps (2011) Updated Policy Statement from the AAP

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