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Restaurants Giving Kids iPads To Keep Them Entertained And Quiet

While a lot of moms and dads are taking away their children’s electronic tablets because of their addiction to screens, apps and gaming devices, one restaurant has decided to do the opposite.

According to LADBible, a restaurant in Melbourne, Australia is getting a lot of heat from its customers. Not because they think that the youngest patrons are being rowdy or obnoxious. Instead, it’s because the restaurant has decided to give them iPads in order to keep them quiet. More often than not, little kids have a difficult time sitting down at a table to enjoy a meal with their family without their electronic entertainment. That’s why the restaurant’s owners decided to do something to make everyone’s dining experience a little more enjoyable.

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Yet, critics are blasting the restaurant’s owners for the move. A Melbourne pub called The Sandy wanted to keep their noise level down so they decided to make iPads available for their youngest customers. However, it’s a controversial decision since some patrons believe that kids are becoming more and more addicted to their electronic devices.

CNN reports that many mental health and educational experts are concerned about the amount of time young children spend in front of a screen each day. Some studies have suggested that excessive screen time can lead to developmental delays in language, personal, social and gross motor skills.

A lot of parents use their iPads, iPhones or children’s Nintendo Switches as electronic babysitters to help keep their kids stationary while they complete tasks around the house. But little by little, 20 minutes turns into one hour and before many parents realize it, one hour becomes several more.

"You have to think about it like dessert," Kathy Hirsh-Pasek, president of the International Society for Infant Studies, told CNN Business. "It won't kill you, and you can have a nice relationship with strawberry ice cream, but you don't want to substitute it for dinner, or real interaction."

RELATED: Edmonton Hospital Uses iPads To Keep Parents Connected To Babies In NICU

However, research also shows that there are some benefits to allowing children to spend a little time playing their favorite apps or watching animated cartoons. There are also studies that say that limited screen time can help teach empathy, improve word learning, encourage creativity and help with problem-solving skills.

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