Tech Toys That Will Help Your Child Learn

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Some parents don’t want to give their children tech toys because they don’t want their kids to become dependent on technology. But there are fabulous technology based toys that really do help kids learn and help their imaginations grow. Using technology is a skill that they will need growing up and with the wide range of tech toys for kids available these days it’s easy to find affordable tech toys for kids. As long as you monitor their usage your kids should be able to use the fun technology gadgets and toys for a huge range of educational purposes:

Amazon Echo

The Amazon Echo is something that everyone in the family can use. Parents can use it to get information and order common household items as well as to help the family stay organized. But it’s uniquely suited for kids because it has Alexa, the personal assistant who has the power of Google. Alexa can answer questions and encourage kids when they have an interest in something. Kids can find out about animals they like, or have Alexa read them audiobooks about a topic that they are interested in. They can also use Alexa to get reminders to do their daily chores and tasks. The Amazon Echo is a tech gadget that every family will be able to use in a million different ways. It is bound to be one of the most popular holiday gifts this year.

iPad

An iPad is something that some parents think is too advanced for a child to use. But if you set it up so that it’s child friendly it can be a wonderful tool to encourage your child to learn. With an Apple pencil kids can draw and color without making a mess all over the table, rug or walls. They can watch videos and they can get a fully interactive learning experience that uses text, videos, and audio to immerse kids in topics that they are learning about. For example, a child that is studying the rainforest can watch lush videos of the rainforest while at the same reading about indigenous tribes and learning facts about the rain forest through a narration. Kids can also ask Siri questions that parents might not know the answers to.

LeapFrog Tablets

LeapFrog tablets are consistently rated as one of the best tech toys for kids. They function like tablets and also have age appropriate games to encourage hand and eye coordination. LeapFrog tablets come preloaded with educational software and are built for kids. That means the buttons are sized for small hands and they are made to be extra sturdy. They can survive being dropped, kicked, and otherwise roughly handled in ways that normal tablets can’t. They are also upgradable with software and other components so that the tablet can grow with your child. LeapFrog tablets range in price but are very affordable compared to other tablets. Kids can also use them to watch videos and do other tasks as well as playing educational games and drawing. Many teachers use LeapFrog tablets in the classroom for younger kids.

If you have a child in your life LeapFrog tablets are excellent gifts. If you want to really help out kids in the community you might even want to donate some tablets to a local nursery school or elementary school. Many classrooms don’t have enough tablets for all the students and would be thrilled to receive a few tablets for classroom use from people in the community. Look for the tablets when they are on sale near the holidays and you can pick them up at great prices.

Want to do research on tech toys for your children? Comparison sites are a great way to do research.

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How To Avoid Posting Too Much Personal Info On Social Media

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Social media can be a great tool for staying in touch with loved ones. It can also be great professionally for marketing your business or networking. But if you post too much personal information on social media it could come back to bite you. From posting your location to getting into internet spats with online trolls posting too much information on social media could hurt your career, tank your business, or even put you in danger. Here are some easy ways to safely use social media without exposing too much of your own personal information:

Check Your Apps

Most of the apps that you have on your cell phone or tablet, including social media platforms like SnapChat, Twitter and Facebook track your location and other personal data constantly while your phone or tablet is on. They do this automatically. But, you can change your settings to turn off the constant monitoring of your location and other data. So go through your phone and tablet and check your apps. Check your privacy settings in each app and turn off data tracking.

Check Your Camera Settings

When you snap a selfie with your cell phone or tablet location data as well other information is stored in the photo’s data. Anyone who knows how can figure out your location, the time and date of the photo and other information when you post that pic to social media. So just like with your other apps check your camera settings. Turn off the data storage for individual photos. That way the only thing you’re posting to social media is that perfect selfie.

Check Your Browser

Some Web browsers like Chrome will mine your personal data and later sell it to advertisers. Use a secure browser that doesn’t mine or store your data if you want to be sure that your personal information isn’t being stored and used.

Check Your Temper

It is very easy to get drawn into an argument on social media. Someone posts something you disagree with so you answer them in a snarky way. They answer back. Before long insults and threats are flying. But you never know who is on the other end of that computer screen. Some people take those word battles seriously and may try to find out your email address or where you work or even where you live. Being right isn’t worth the potential risk.

If you find yourself getting into a heated social media exchange with a stranger take a few deep breaths. Walk away from the computer or put down the phone.  Remember that you can end the argument by just signing out or doing something else.

Check Your Friends

How many friends do you have on Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites? Do you actually know all those people? It might kind of tedious if you have a lot of friends but you should go through and check the profiles of the people that you have friended. Not everyone online is who they say they are. If you friend people that you don’t know they can have access to all kinds of personal information like where you work, who your family and friends are, and other sensitive information. Make sure that each person that you have friended is legitimate. And take a few moments to clean house on your social media profiles. Spammers are easy to spot and they should be the first ones that you unfriend.

Check Your Games

Do you play a lot of games on social media? Games are notoriously full of malware and spyware that can access your personal data easily. If you like to play games online make sure that your privacy settings are set to not allow those games to mine your data.

Want to use an app but not sure if it’s good? Review websites are a great source of information on applications!

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Essential Electronics for Musicians

No matter what instrument someone plays, there are certain electronics that every musician will want if they are hoping to make the most of their talents. Without the proper gear, musicians are left behind their competition in what is already an extremely competitive industry. From recording to touring and everything in between, there is certain gear that no musician should have to go without.

Whether someone plays the guitar or the piano, or whether they prefer to focus on the recording and mixing side of things, there are electronic devices that can help anyone in the niche of the music industry they find themselves in. Those that are focusing on the touring side of the music industry will also have electronics that can help them out if they know what to look for.

Top Electronic Products for Musicians

SNARK Guitar Tuner

This tuner is one of the most valuable pieces of electrical equipment for any guitarist. It clips onto anywhere on the guitar, although usually on the headstock, which is what the tuning pegs are mounted on. The biggest benefit of the SNARK guitar tuner is that it allows the user to tune their guitar in a noisy environment by tuning the guitar based on the vibrations that are flowing through the wood itself. This gives musicians the ability to tune their instrument somewhere where there is music being played or where it is just noisy in general.

Boss TU3 Chromatic Tuner Pedal

There are lots of pedals that come in handy for guitar players. This is one that is seen at the foot of just about anyone playing a guitar on a stage. The Boss TU3 is another device that is mainly for guitar players, but it’s so popular it still makes the list of the most essential electronics for musicians. While the SNARK comes in handy in a lot of environments, having a pedal that solely devoted to tuning is an invaluable assistant to those that play a lot of shows and concerts. It works great for both guitar and bass and can be found on Amazon for around $100.

Akai Professional MPK Mini Mk2

This is an ultra-compact leaderboard designed for those that like to produce music on their desktop or even on their laptop while they’re on-the- go. One of the things that makes it so great when a musician is travelling is that it doesn’t require software drivers or even an external power adapter. It’s a small keyboard, but there are dedicated octave up and down buttons that ensure the musician is given the full melodic range that they could need. There’s even an onboard arpeggio feature that makes it easy to create melodies. The best part is that it’s available for $70 on Amazon!

AKG K 240 Semi-Open Studio Headphones

These are great entry-level studio headphones, available on Amazon for just over $60, much more affordable than many of the quality studio headphones out on the market. They have a self-adjusting headband that makes them comfortable for listening on the long-haul. The K 240 delivers a wider dynamic range and higher sensitivity than the model that came before it. They also feature a detachable cable, a rarity among studio headphones and a feature that makes the cable easy to replace if it breaks.

Plenty of ¼” to ¼” Cable

This cable is the bread and butter of anyone that is wanting to do music by putting on shows and concerts. Electric guitars, acoustic guitars, pianos, and all sorts of things use these cables to plug into their pedals or speakers. It’s important for those that want to do a lot of concerts to have plenty of these on-hand.