If you have an elementary school-aged child, you are probably well aware that many of his or her classmates have cellphones. We're talking really little kids – like second grade little.


My son, Isaac, 7, came home from his first day in school this week and told me that a few of his classmates have cell phones to connect with their friends and family.

Wait a minute...is this the kid we just bought Crayola Markers and Transformers folders for? I'd much rather have him learn his science, math, and spelling lessons before he dives into the cyber world of 4g, mobile apps, and heaven forbid...Skype!

However, before breaking down and adding another line to your family plan, ask yourself these four questions to determine if your child is actually ready for a cell phone:

  • Does your child know how to use a cell phone? Sure the obvious answer is, "Yes, what kid doesn't know how to use a cell phone?" But it's more than just downloading games; it's about using the phone appropriately. Can your child be responsible to use the phone for the way you intend him or her to use it?
  • Is he/she mature enough for a cell phone? If your child is always asking you where his shoes, his homework are, how is he going to keep track of a phone?
  • Why does he need a cell phone? Is he involved in activities where parents are often not present? Probably not. Fact is, until kids start venturing out without adult supervision there isn't much use for their own phone.
  • Does she use the home phone to contact friends? If she isn't contacting her friends the old fashioned way, why does she need a cell?        Dan Collins and contributions from  (Shine)