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The purposes of this research were (1) to analyze the demographic factors of the parents affecting digital media usage behaviors of preschool children and their impacts on preschool children and (2) to analyze the parents’ behaviors of taking care of preschool children with digital media in the 21st century. The research sample consisted of 400 parents in Chanthaburi and Trat provinces. The employed research instruments were a questionnaire and an interview form. The data were analyzed using the percentage, mean, t-test, and one-way ANOVA. The research findings were as follows: Regarding the analysis results of preschool children’s digital media usage behaviors of preschool children, it was found that the majority of parents were
always supervising their children while they were using smart phones. Sometimes they posted questions to their children concerning the contents of the digital media in order to review with them. The children asked for accessing the digital media for 1-3 times per day. As for opinions of the parents, they thought that their children were addicted to the digital media at the moderate level, and they allowed their children to use digital media for 1-2 hours per day. The parents preferred that their children use digital media in their general free time. The most popular digital media was YouTube. As for the results of hypothesis testing of taking care behaviors for preschool children, it was found that the behavior of caring for them while they
were using smart phones, the posting of questions concerning contents in the digital media for reviewing with their children, the checking of appropriate digital media for their children, and the determination of the appropriate time for their children to use digital media were significantly related to the demographic difference of the parents at the .05 level of statistical significance. As for the results of qualitative study, it was found that most parents realized the benefits of digital media for increasing their children’s knowledge and skills, and developing their ideas; also, digital media could capture the children’s interests and enabled them to remain sitting still. The parents should allow their children to watch interactive digital media for no more than 15 minutes per session due to the concern for their eye health and hyperactivity that could
result from the overuse of digital media and smartphones.
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