Six ways childhood is different today

Read below to see just some of the ways childhood has changed over time – nostalgia trip guaranteed!


1. The influence of technology

If you ever wondered as a child why the sky was blue or why chickens laid eggs, you had to do your research, usually with the help of a grown-up. Now, all children need to do is a quick search and they can find the answers.

Children today are exploring the world through technology, and with so much to see at the touch of a button, it’s clear to see why.

CBeebies apps such as Playtime Island provide lots of learning, discovery and self-expression opportunities, while the CBeebies Storytime app is a fantastic tool for working on those literacy skills alone, or with an adult. 


Did you know? You can now interact with CBeebies using only your voice? Play interactive hide and seek, sing along with Andy’s Dance Party and test your geography knowledge with Go Jetters Glitchy Facts.


2. Families come in all shapes and sizes

What was once considered the traditional family unit is changing. More and more children now have parents who aren’t married or have step-parents, step-siblings and half-siblings. This was something much less common, and even considered strange in the past. Nowadays we can embrace and celebrate families of all shapes and sizes! 


Did you know? Talking to your child on a regular basis is a good way to build their self-esteem and communication skills, as well as helping them understand different topics. Why not try talking to your child about families, and what makes yours special with our handy discussion guide.


3. Talking more

In the past, there weren’t many opportunities to talk openly about feelings and emotions. Mental health issues, such as anxiety, were often ignored, especially in young children. Today, many of us are starting to recognise that social and emotional skills develop from a young age, and this means it’s important to talk openly with young children about how they are feeling, and to encourage them to open up if they are struggling. 


Try this: help your little one to understand their feelings by following our tips on how to talk to your child about emotions.


4. More opportunities

These days, children have many more opportunities to follow their dreams than they had in the past and this is especially true of girls.

Although there’s still a way to go, girls are now encouraged to aim for careers in the science and engineering industries, something that was almost completely unheard of in the past.

You can see inspirational female characters here on CBeebies, such as Lois the firefighter in Biggleton and Bitz, the engineer from Bitz and Bob. The show can even help your child to think like an engineer.


Did you know? Using non-gendered job-titles is a great way of subconsciously teaching your children about equality. Try to say ‘firefighter’ instead of ‘fireman’ and ‘police officer’ instead of ‘policeman’.


5. How they watch their favourites

There was a time when children woke extra early to watch their favourite Saturday morning TV shows, and if they missed out, they would have to wait another week to see them again.

Today, binging on an entire series or rewatching the best episodes over and over are standard ways to indulge in your favourite shows. With so many different video and catch-up apps, children can watch television whenever they want, wherever they are. No patience necessary!


Did you know? Whether you want to set off on a global adventure with the Go Jetters or join Tee & Mo on a big day out – the CBeebies world is your oyster with CBeebies iPlayer. You can even download your favourite shows and watch them offline.


6. Saving the planet

Although recycling has been around for hundreds of years, these days we are becoming more and more aware of its importance in helping to keep our planet healthy. Children are now used to seeing different types of recycling bins at home and in school, and are encouraged to be mindful of how their waste effects the environment around them.


Try this: follow our top tips for encouraging your little ones to recycle.



Read even more parenthood tips and tricks from CBeebies.

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