I'm going to sound really old now but it's quite startling how our kids are completely au fait with technology.
Eldest daughter just turned 10 and we got her a very cheap monthly sim which she has in the Nokia handset that used to belong to my Mum. Before her birthday I set up the phone for her by clearing the handset and putting on a nice opening greeting for her. Concerned that she may have been hoping for some sort of smartphone, we were thrilled to see that she was over the moon to have got her own form of communication. Within minutes she had navigated through the handset, changed her ringtone, played the one available game of snake and nodded profusely when I explained she only has 60 texts a month and 60 minutes of talk time.
So far so good with the phone except she does tend to call Grandpa for a chat most days during break time and if I am 5 seconds late in arriving to collect her from a party, school or ballet she has called me!
Boy in the middle is probably going to turn out to be a computer whizz. He is happiest when he has an electronic gadget to play on or fiddle with. His favourite item is the DS but if that gets confiscated (fairly often) he can navigate the IPad, PC, Wii and recently I have found him reading a book with DH's iPod plugged into his ears so he can listen to Gangnam style!
Even A and E get to join in and it is clearly a sign of the times when during their imaginative play I hear them say, "I just need to send this email then I'll do it" or "I can't download that game as the memory is full" or the best is "We can do it later but first we have to Skype Grandma".
I can now leave them with my iPad (in it's protective case) and they can navigate Channel 5 and watch Peppa Pig together for hours! When my Dad comes round he brings his iPad with him and when I asked him to look after A and E for a few minutes last week while I went to collect the older two, I came home to find the girls sitting on one sofa face-timing my Dad across the room!
A and E are also keen to take my smart phone if they get the opportunity. Just last week E was playing a toddler memory game on my phone one morning. Suddenly I saw she wasn't playing the game but was in my text section. I grabbed the phone and discovered that she had managed to send a text to one of my Mum's friends inviting her to download "what's app" so they could keep in touch. It's important to add at this point that I am using the old sim card that used to belong to my Mum and I haven't deleted all of her contacts yet.
Not wanting to cause unnecessary harm and potential heart failure to my Mum's friend who may have got the fright of her life wondering how my Mum was managing to communicate from "the other side", I quickly sent a follow up message with an apology!
I guess I have realised that it won't be long before our kids use of technology overtakes ours and they will be showing us how to sync or swim!