Friday, 20 April 2012

What do you buy your 8 year old for their birthday?

Up until recently it's been pretty easy to keep daughter happy with a new bike, a tent, a play kitchen or, like last year, a day out at the Chatsworth Horse Show.

Now, however, she's reaching that technological age.

Some of her classmates already have mobile phones, TVs in their bedrooms and other such items that I consider suitable for teenagers, not 8 year olds.

And it didn't start recently either.

Two years ago I dropped Izzy at a classmate's 6th birthday party and asked the birthday girl what she'd got for her birthday.

"An i-pod touch" was her answer.

I was so shocked I replied "I got one of those for my 40th!"

And don't forget the girl down the road who came round to play aged 4 and pulled her Samsung moblie phone out of her pocket!

Now another of Izzy's friends has got an i-pod touch for her birthday and Izzy wants one. It's not necessarily the cost I object to (although £150 for an 8 year old's present does seem a little excessive), it's the item itself. It's a sophisticated piece of gadgetry which I don't want to leave in the hands of an 8 year old. Not only that, if they start to get these things when they are 7 or 8, what do they get when they are teenagers?

I need to leave myself somewhere to go!

It's Izzy's 8th birthday at the end of this month and I'm afraid she is not getting an i-pod touch, an i-pad, a mobile phone, a Blackberry or her own TV.

She really enjoys taking photos with her very cheap camera that someone bought her a couple of years ago. She has looked after it well, but it takes terrible photos, so I'm prepared to buy her a slighty better one. It also encourages her to come out on walks as she likes to photograph things along the way:



So this is what I'm getting my 8 year old: Technological, but, I think, reasonable.

And yes, of course, it's pink!

14 comments:

Sarah said...

Good choice, it's creative too.

I haven't bought my boys ipods either although the friends of my eldest clubbed together and got him a Nano for his birthday last year! Amazingly, it's still working.

siobhansqueensguide said...

That seems like a fabulous present! I'd be happy with that.

It does always horrify when my Brownies come back after Christmas and it's all iPods, phones, laptops, etc. I felt like I was asking a lot for a laptop for my birthday (18th) and Christmas from all three sets of Grandparents...

Jen said...

That's a good present! My 8 year old did get an ipod touch for his 8th birthday but he has a teenage sister and as is always the way with older siblings, they grow up a little faster!

One thing I will say when you do get to the point of being happy to buy one, is try tier one http://www.tier1online.com/ - we got our son a refurbished one for £49 and honestly, apart from a few scratches on the back, you'd never know. Daughter's had similar scratches from new within an hour! With son, we felt happier giving him a £50 item than a £150 one if it got dropped/broken but he's taken really good care of it.

libby said...

Good idea, but I hate to tell you that you will give in over the next few years....

Pink Fairy Vicky said...

I agree, its crazy how young children have so much technology. The camaera is a fantastic present especially as its pink!

Kelloggsville said...

I think the camera is a great present but I also think an ipod touch is not a bad thing for an 8 year old. Put yourself into the modern world they are growing up in. talking books,music, age appropriate apps. With an ipod touch at home you will get away with getting her a cheaper phone because it is a balance between. nice ipod touch that gets looked after and a phone that can be bumped around or the really nice phone that you just know will irritate you when it gets lost or broken. And I'm with Libby you'll fold in the next couple of years but that is ok too, because it's not really folding it's allowing her to develop and advance in the modern world in an age appropriate manner. But no 2 ways about it, you'll end you forking out for a level of technology that will annoy you and you will be all 'I didn't get this at that age'!

Expat mum said...

I agree with you if only because little kids lose things. (And big kids in my house.) The camera is a fab idea.

Polly said...

I think it is an excellent idea for a gift. Ollie is one of the only kids I know who doesn't have a touch - he is 5.....we settled on a DSi, at least we have control over the games we buy for it and we have limited it to after dinner only. (Unless we want him to sit still for a period of time!!)

claire said...

Eldest son got an iPod Touch for Christmas just before he turned 10. I agree that they are living in a different world to the one we grew up in (I got a stereo for my 14th birthday for instance) but there has to be a balance between that and it getting ridiculous.

He hasn't had a DSI at all (how we managed to get away with that one I still can't work out), he'll get a laptop when he starts High School (it's part of the stationery order!!!) and we haven't gone near a phone for him...

Youngest son may be a little different, they grow up much faster than the 1st and he's already a dab hand at the pc, the aforementioned iPod Touch and his Dad's iPad...

The camera sounds like a great idea!

Working Girl said...

Love your blog. I got a camera for my tenth birthday and photography has been one of my deepest passions ever since - I even manage to make a little money from selling my photographs sometimes!

Congratulations on an excellent gift choice.

ADDY said...

I agree. I think too much expensive technology at that age is silly, because it will either get lost or bashed about and also you will have nowhere to go later. Also get her some photo albums or scrapbooks to encourage her to get photos printed. These days it is all too easy to store them on computers and then lose them when the computer crashes. You then have nothing to look at to remind you decades later.

Crystal Jigsaw said...

I'd say that was a great present. The age of technology gets more expensive every year. I also think an ipod touch (not sure what one is really) seems a bit much for an 8 year old, and a mobile phone for a 4 year old? Good grief!!

CJ x

sally in norfolk said...

I totally agree with what you say and think a camera is the perfect gift :-)

BNM said...

great idea
Bel got a camera for Christmas and then lego for her birthday, plus DS games.
BNM