10 Ways to Use Old Smartphone Devices for Kids
Over the years we renew our service provider contracts and tend to upgrade our devices regularly, leaving us wondering what to do with the old ones. If you have kids in the home, here are 10 great Ways to Use Old Smartphone Devices for Kids while teaching them responsibility, confidence and motivation.
Disclosure: As a #TEAMTELUS Ambassador this post is sponsored; content is 100% my own opinion.
10 Ways to Use Old Smartphone Devices for Kids
- Geocache – Geocaching is one of my favourite ways to get the family outdoors, get exercise and a little adventure. Using an old smartphone device you can set up your geocache targets over wifi and download the maps for offline use. This does require an app with premium membership in order to access the offline trail map feature but if you are into geocaching like I am, it’s easy to get hooked on the next family geocache target. Use one master account and set it up on your other devices before heading out. Just make sure you plan ahead for the level of difficulty and terrain to ensure the geocache is safe and appropriate for the ages and physical abilities of your geocache party.
- Gaming, Movies and Music – Between all the games kids want to play, like Minecraft, you can also set up your Netflix account using the app to use for TV programs or movies, or download movies and music to the device over wifi to allow use on your next road trip.
- Fitness Motivation – Beyond the all the fun gaming apps kids will be eager to try, using an old smartphone device for fitness motivation is a great way to encourage younger ones to embrace technology in healthy ways. Commit to a weekly step challenge with wearable tech and set device reminders to get moving.
- Scheduler and Alarms – Kids can easily get lost in the shuffle of their daily homework and activity responsibilities. Although parents usually have the schedule down to a science, using an old smartphone device to teach your child responsibility is a great way to support and promote independence beginning at young age. There is no need to add the stress of appointment scheduling onto young ones but setting a daily alarm to get up for school or for their weekly sports practice will provide them responsibility and a sense of control. Both easy and easy ways to use old smartphone devices for kids.
- Reading – I’m an avid reader and believer in encouraging kids to read daily. Although I much prefer a paper copy to feel in my hands during my reading experience, using an old smartphone device to download ebooks has become a big convenience for busy families. Just remember to have your children take breaks from screen time.
- Art and Tranquility – There are many ways to use old smartphone devices for kids and several apps you can download that offer various forms of creating art or offering tranquil ways to relax. Kids have much more on their plates today more than ever; finding ways to help our kids relax at the end of the day is important. Try a meditation, art creator or tranquil sounds app to help your kids soothe and recover from worries or just the busyness of the days events.
- Photography and Videos – Kids love to take pictures and with all the picture editing apps available on smartphones, using an old smartphone device as their personal camera will not only be fun but save on clunkier electronics you just don’t need. Let your kids creativity shine; encourage them to record themselves giving short speeches or reading books to promote confidence in future school assignments and settings.
- Remote Control – If you solely use digital TV at home, using an old smartphone device as a remote makes it a lot easier. I personally like this as an option for babysitters when digital TV box remotes happen to go missing or if you have resorted to using cellular phones as your only phones in the home, with no land line, they can also use the phone to message you directly should any questions or issues arise.
- Emergencies – You can use any old smartphone device to dial “911” in the event of an emergency, even if the device does not have a connection or a telephone number attached to it. This is a safety feature making it a great way to keep safe at home, in the car or on the person for a bike ride or walk.
- Sell, Donate or Recycle – When you are done with your old devices, you can sell in local buy and sell groups or used sale websites. My personal recommendation would either be to donate the phone to someone in need or, if the device is unusable, recycle your old device to lesson environmental impact. With programs like the TELUS trade-in program, you can return to your closest TELUS depot to ensure the hazardous components of mobile phones are disposed in a responsible manner. In return, TELUS will plant a tree for every device recycled through this program. That is something you can feel good about.
From geocaching to gaming, there are many ways to use old smartphone devices for kids. Whether your child is ready to graduate to a family plan on a new device of their own or begin using one of your older devices via household wifi internet, always practice online safety practices. Ensure parental controls and restrictions have been set on the device.
To help, here are some great tips for Back to School Online Safety for Elementary to High School with instructions for setting parental controls and restrictions.