I got an email from Linda overnight.

Linda is in Kambah.

She says….

Mark,

I cannot begin to tell you how pleased I am that the school holidays are over for another summer.

Mine are getting older, but they’re still a handful.

Question for you.

How old should kids be when they get their first mobile phone ?

My youngest turned 10 in the second half of last year. He’s going to school on the bus these days and I figured it was important that he had a way of contacting me and vice versa.

I got him an old iPhone.

He’s over the moon. I think it felt a bit like Christmas to him over the weekend.

I bought this iPhone4 online and set it up with a prepaid sim.

I think more than anything else, it’ll be a test for him as to how well he can look after his stuff.

He loses it, he’s not getting another one.

How old should kids be when they get their first phone ?

I’m not sure what the going age is these days for mobile phones. I think it depends on the circumstance.

The Guardian in London reported last year that Nearly one in 10 schoolchildren gets their first mobile phone by the time they are five, a study suggests.

On average, children are given a handset at the age of 11 but nearly one in 10 has a phone at less than half this age.iphone teen

5 seems a tad young to me. I don’t know that there should be any hard and fast rules on this. The reality is that as your child approaches high school, it’s likely that others in the peer group will start to get their own mobiles, and you’re going to find yourself under pressure.

This is the 21st century. The mobile phone is a helluva lot more than a mobile phone. It’s a multimedia device.  Your child’s mobile phone will be a web browser, a camera, a photo album, a diary, an address book, and MP3 player and a game console.

Do think about what rules you will impose as to when the phone can be accessed.  Australian teens are a sleep deprived lot…and one of the biggest reasons is because they’re sitting up on their phones.

Your thoughts ?