New App “Kinder” Helps Elementary Schoolers with Playdates

kinder2Stapleton parents often control their kids’ playdates as well as play times and locations. This, of course, essentially makes it so parents are choosing their children’s’ friends. Some Stapleton parents are fine with that. “These are four to eight year old kids,” exclaimed Kathy Gregory. “They aren’t developed mentally enough to be choosing their own friends. There are certain evils I can see in kids that maybe my son can’t see. I do my best to make it so he is not meeting up with that kid, even if I like his parents.” Annie Weber agrees but for different reasons. “Hey, these kids could be friends for life,” says Weber. “If I don’t like their parents, I don’t want to be stuck sitting next to them at birthday parties, having dinners at each other’s houses, etc. just so our kids can hang out. So, yeah, I like to try to select my kid’s friends so that I am comfortable hanging out with their parents.” Kinder attempts to take the control out of the hands of the parents and put it into the hands of the kids themselves. Developer Brian Clark says kids can recognize qualities in other kids they like through a photo and brief description just as well as an adult would. “Kids are extremely perceptive,” says Clark. “In fact, they are often more perceptive than adults.” Clark says the app is just as much about timing as it is trying to develop a long-term friendship. “Sometimes a kid’s main friends or neighbors just aren’t around. And parents typically don’t want to play with their kids, so the app attempts to fill that gap. If your child is at a park, you simply login to Kinder, and you can start perusing other potential playdates who are in the area playing, or are considering going to play. Just like Tinder, you view a quick profile and swipe left if you are not interested in playing, and right if you are interested in playing. If the other child(ren) swipe right on your kid’s profile, you are able to connect and meet up to play.” Sue Dreesman says the app has been very affective. “When we go to the park, we always use it,” says Dreesman. “It allows my daughter to meet lots of different people, and she can get exposed to a lot more that way. Otherwise, I feel like I am sheltering her.” Christine Wiley agrees. “It has been extremely helpful in finding my kids’ friends,” said Wiley. “It takes those awkward setup playdates out of the picture. The kids already feel like they know each other and can just go play.” Clark says the app will help connect kids and keep them outside and active as well. “Instead of kids sitting around because their friends aren’t around, they can instantly meet new friends,” says Clark. The Kinder App can be found in the Play Store as well as Apple’s App Store.]]>

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