Technology means so much in today’s world. Students, including children, live, eat, and breathe technology. From the time the alarm wakes them up to the time that they lay their head down at night students are affected by technology. In 2009 it was estimated that a whopping 71% of teens owned a cellular device (Lenhart, 2009). You can imagine that number has grown drastically with the improvements in technology. Between cell phones, TVs, and tablets technology rules the lives of kids today and tomorrow.
Cell phones have a major impact on kids these days. Between setting their alarm for school or keeping in touch with friends you can find most teens with their faces glued to a smartphone. According to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (2018) 90% of kids aged 13-17 have used social media. With such a great number of kids utilizing technology on mobile devices, you can imagine that it would have an impact ranging from positive to negative and minuscule to great.
Not only do kids utilize technology on cell phones, but many of the games they play have been moved from the backyard onto the television. So many kids in the US utilize game systems that the United States Federal Trade Commission felt it was necessary to provide the public with information and options available to parents when their children utilize gaming systems. This would include information on game rating restrictions, disabling internet access, time limits, profiles, and in-app purchase restrictions (US Federal Trade Commission, 2012). It can be concluded that this type of warning would not be published if the impact could not be potentially negative. Not only do kids hear vulgar language with these game devices on TV, but many times they are riddled with violence. This could cause negative behaviors.
Tablets and technology have become a staple in children’s everyday life as well. From the toddler listening to Baby Shark to the elementary school students signing onto their zoom class, tables are in the hands of a vast majority of American children. The ability to attend school in the comfort of a student’s home has been both positive and negative. The student that lives in a positive and supportive learning environment at home has likely successfully completed most of this school year on technology. However, the low-income student that lives in poverty has more than likely struggled and is not doing well. This shows both the positive and negative aspects that technology has.
In conclusion, technology has been detrimental to youth. Its impact ranges from positive to negative depending on what it is used for, how long it is used, and what support is provided with it. All things are good in moderation. Technology can certainly support kids and help them to learn, but there are things of this world that cannot be learned on a device. It is important for a child to experience both technology and the natural world for they will grow and inhabit both one day.
American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. (2018). Social media and teens. Retrieved from https://www.aacap.org/AACAP/Families_and_Youth/Facts_for_Families/FFF- Guide/Social-Media-and-Teens- 100.aspx#:~:text=Socialmediaplaysabig,mediasiteatleast daily.
Lenhart, A. (2009). Teens and mobile phones over the past five years: Pew internet looks back. Retrieved from https://www.pewresearch.org/internet/2009/08/19/teens-and-mobile- phones-over-the-past-five-years-pew-internet-looks-back/
US Federal Trade Commission. (2012). Kids, parents, and video games. Retrieved from h ttps://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/0270-kids-parents-and-video-games