News Brief


The article discusses how media and screen technology is affecting children in today’s society. Children are using screens somewhere around 4o hours a week and parents are not realizing the harmful effects it has on their children. Many parents don’t realize the harmful effects of screen time because they are not immediate. It was explained that many parents don’t feel like the effort they have to put in is worth it because the decline in school performance and other problems are so gradual that it is almost unnoticeable. Doctors recommend that children 2 years old and above should be limited to 1 to 2 hours of screen time a day and no more. When children are getting many more hours, it causes problems with academics, obesity, sleep schedules, and behavior. The study done by Iowa State University found that limiting screen time indirectly affected BMI. When screen time is limited, children exhibit better school performance, get more sleep, among other health benefits.

This article is relevant in today’s society because technology is becoming increasingly available to the general public. I remember that I was not allowed to have a cell phone until freshman year of high school and now there are many elementary aged children with smart phones and, even younger, toddlers with tablets. There are many dvd’s and tablet apps that are geared towards parents with children as a learning tool. It is convenient to let your child be immersed in screen technology because the parent knows where their child is and that the child is staying out of trouble, but they cannot see the harmful effects the screen time has on the child. I believe that parents should be informed through research of their own or by their pediatrician so that their children can lead a healthier lifestyle. We are aware that too much screen time for adults is not healthy, so why are we letting our children spend 40 plus hours looking at a screen?

– Taylor Hilton, April 3, 2014


4 thoughts on “News Brief

  1. Heather says:

    The reasons why many parents allow their children to spend so much time in front of a screen interests me. I have noticed many parents offering their children iPhones to distract them, as it is something on hand and it distracts the child immediately. Maybe it starts with small exposure like that and just continues to build.
    Watching my son at basketball practice a few weeks ago, I noticed that yet again the mother with a two year old and a newborn was struggling to tend to the newborns’ needs and deal with the other child’s jumping crying fit. I wondered, “Why is that little girl crying so much?” She always seems to be upset. At practice. At games. I thought maybe it was just her temperament. Maybe she’s feeling slighted by the new baby. Maybe her parents aren’t attentive to her needs. The maybes are endless. What I noticed at the last basketball practice was that she regulated immediately when mom begrudgingly handed over her iPhone cued up with a bright and flashy game. Was she endlessly struggling because she wanted tech toy joy? Or was it a bandaid solution that brought them all temporary relief?
    Anyhow, I think it’s common that parents look to things in their hands to distract their children. It used to be things like keys, and now it’s iPhones. Parents are busy. Kids want activity. Everyone wants a break. So maybe, if parents lessen their own use of electronics, and try to juggle in some more quality time with their kids, we won’t need so much distraction. On the other hand, maybe its just the way it is…..I still don’t know.

  2. sjb522 says:

    This topic is so interesting and relevant in our lives today. I really feel like technology is good and bad at the same time. Since our world is becoming more and more technology based, it is useful for children to learn how to use technology to keep up with the times and succeed in the future. However, technology makes people extremely anti-social and kids hardly ever go outside and play anymore. All I did when I was little was play outside with my neighbors, I hardly ever watched TV or used technology. It wasn’t until middle school that I got a cell phone and iPod and started really using technology on a daily basis. So many parents allow their children to have the newest technology to make them happy and to keep them quiet, but if we keep allowing children to have all the new things, then they will always expect the newest and best technology. Kids need to move and by physical, technology is limiting that and not allowing children to grow to their full potential.

  3. Ruth Kronk says:

    This is a very important problem in today’s society, that needs to be addressed. Children are being introduced to screens more and more early as technology increases. My oldest sister didn’t get her first cell phone until she was 18, and I’m the youngest child and I ended up getting my first cell phone at 12. Now days small babies are being given an I-pad to play with and it certainly can’t be good for them. Looking at a screen is really hard on the eyes and older children are starting to spend more time then ever before looking at screens. Teachers are even assigning homework that requires a computer. I agree that children should even be introduced to a screen until they are at least 2 years old.

  4. paigehanzy says:

    This is such a touchy topic! I must agree and say technology is changing the meaning of childhood as we knew it. Parents let there children use technology for different reasons but that does not make it right. PLAY is becoming extinct which is very detrimental to the development of children. It hurts to slowly watch the new generation get sucked into this media black hole that is pretty much reversible.

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