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Christian Nimsky's Weblog

Filtering by Category: Parenting

On Kids and Kindles

Christian Nimsky


Things have been relatively slow in “kid tech” around the Nimsky household the past two years and that’s been fine by us.  This past holiday season we started transitioning a bit away from kiddie toys and were trying to feed our kids’ ever-increasing appetite for books.  We tried Kindles.

I really like the Kindles, especially the newer version.  It’s lightweight, about the right size for a kid and with one of those silicone jacket accessories pretty resistant to slipping (and therefore, dropping).  

The kids like them too, and they came in very handy on our recent ski trip.  Instead of asking for yet more movie or video game time, they ask for another book.

The Kindle has no real “parent” controls on it, and some software development in this area by the Amazon team would be welcome.  We’ve managed to teach our kids that “we choose and buy the books together” but if there were some kind of robust rating system (or, better, you could integrate Commonsense Media’s database with some filtering rules) then I would be more comfortable with the kids exploring subject to some kind of allowance.

Crap Plastic Toys

Christian Nimsky

The public reaction to the Mattel Toy Recall is somewhat disappointing in that the focus seems mostly on the lead and the oversight process.  My heart goes out to any family with a child affected by lead but it really shouldn’t surprise anyone in the slightest degree that this could happen given the way we’ve delegated our children’s’ playtime equipment to the lowest common denominators of the global economy: Retail at Walmart or Target for convenient purchase a cheap toy from a global marketing engine like Mattel and outsource the production (and likely the design) to China.  Both China and Mattel need to answer for their parts in this play but this really isn’t about China - it could happen in any outsource scenario - to me the issue is that we have a part to answer for too: we’re fueling the demand for these crap plastic toys.
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