Tips for Purchasing a Digital Camera for Your Child

Summer is here and it’s often fun to let kids capture their own memories of a family by putting a camera in their hands.  Preschool aged children and older will love the freedom of taking their own pictures and adding an alternate perspective to the family scrapbook. Before you venture out to purchase a camera for your child, here are some helpful tips about the kind of camera to buy and how to teach your child to be responsible with their latest device.

With so many different options, it’s easy to find a good quality camera.  Consider both used or new depending on your child’s age and budget.

Used?  Yes, used!  Depending on the age of your child, they don’t necessarily need the latest and greatest featuring the highest number of megapixels and manual settings.  A hand me down camera, an older iPod Touch, or even a pre-owned camera from your local CraigsList will suffice. Purchasing a brand new digital camera can be a large monetary investment in a device that can be easily lost or broken.  There will be far less guilt and heartbreak when there is a camera mishap if you don’t fork over a ton of money.  And trust me, the likelihood is high even if the camera strap is always around their wrist!

If you’d rather buy new, you don’t need the latest model with the high number of megapixels that is compact in size, and features a ton of manual settings. Your child does not need those bells and whistles.

As exciting as a new or gently used camera is, have a conversation with your child about it before they are allowed to use it and be sure to do the following:

  • Label your camera.  Kids misplace things and even if you haven’t spent a lot of money on your child’s camera, you probably want it to come back to you if it is lost. Mabel’s Labels are bright, colorful, highly durable, and easy to spot at a distance and perfect for a camera and every other device and item you own.
  • Invest in rechargeable batteries and talk about energy conservation.  Turning the camera on and off wastes batteries.  There’s nothing worse than a dead camera battery when you need it most. Your child will quickly learn the same lesson out of frustration about not being able to use their camera when they want.
  • Discuss appropriate times to use the camera.  When our kids first got their new-to-them cameras, they wanted to use them all the time.  Talk about when it is and isn’t appropriate to take photos and respecting those who don’t want their picture taken.

Cute girl taking a picture against a white background via Shutterstock

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