Researchers have been following technology trends in family households where both parents work outside the home and where the mom stays home to raise the kids. The results of a new study are out and will most likely be used to target specific groups with advertising and promotional information but we can also observe parenting behaviors that have a lasting impact on the growth and development of impressionable children.
Following Technology Trends in Family Households
…Data from our newly released LMX Family study adds unique perspective to the discussion by comparing the media and technology ecosystems in which kids aged 6-12, in both types of households, are growing up today.
Generally, stay at home moms have more time and families where both parents work have more money. How does that impact their use of media and technology?
Stay-at-home moms clearly had the time advantage over moms in dual-income households. They spent more time doing non-media-related activities with their kids than moms from dual-income households. Stay-at-home moms were more likely to interact with their children through a variety of traditional family activities including: helping with school work at home, playing with toys and video games (especially educational game systems), playing outside, cooking as well as other household chores.
This, in part, could be related to the economic advantage that was evident in the dual-income households. Households with two income earners had a median income of $74,579 compared to households with a stay-at-home mom at $44,394. That additional income was highly correlated with increased access to a variety of experiences including those related to media and technology.
With higher household incomes, dual-income families were significantly more likely to own new technology devices such as laptop computers, smartphones, iPhones, tablet computers including iPads (in fact, they were twice as likely to own an iPad), iPod Touch, Netbooks, iPods, web-enabled TVs, eReaders, satellite radio, 3-D TVs and digital video streaming devices.
With access to a wider range of devices, moms in these households were significantly more likely to mention using technology to help manage family life and to credit technology with making family life easier. Time-saving strategies were also evident in the working-moms’ propensity to multitask while watching TV.
I always recommend a balanced approach to life and of course when it comes to raising a family balance is very important. Since media and technology have become such a huge part of our lives parents must learn how to balance the use of traditional media and more advanced technology, because both types have benefits exclusive of each other.