Lyla, the one-year-old iPad fan

Lyla Chrzescijanski is a whiz with the iPad.
Lyla Chrzescijanski is a whiz with the iPad.

FORGET toys, iPads are the popular pacifier of choice among Ipswich mums and dads.

According the early childhood experts, tots are interacting with iPads and smart phones from as young as six months of age.

North Ipswich mum Yasmin Chrzescijanski said her one-year-old daughter Lyla was a whiz with the iPad.

"It's amazing what she can do on it already - she's not even two years old yet," she said. "She can take photos of her self and can swipe back through the photos."

Ms Chrzescijanski said Lyla was nine months when she first started to play with the iPad.

She credited the device for teaching her daughter to count to 12, identify animals and even learn to count to four in Spanish.

"The iPad certainly makes life a lot easier - there's educational games on there so I don't have to pack 15 toys to entertain her," she said.

There's educational games on there so I don't have to pack 15 toys to entertain her.

A UK study released this month found more than 50% of children between five and eight years old had used an iPad to learn and play.

However, more children between the ages two and five years knew how to play a computer or use a smart phone than swim, ride a bike or tie their shoe laces.

Springfield psychologist Dr Kate Lemerle erred at allowing young children to use iPads during a time of early brain development.

She said although there were some educational advantages, if children were absorbed in games for too long this could inhibit interactional, emotional and motor skills.

"(Giving a child an iPad) is a variation of plonking the child in front of the TV," she said.

Ms Chrzescijanski said she thought it was important children knew how to interact with technology from a young age but felt it shouldn't rule their lives.

Topics:  early childhood education

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