This week I stumbled upon two very different views on children and their use of screen time. The first, a reading assigned for a class and the second, a blog written by a father. The article read for a class entitled, The Nuts and Bolts of Digital Civic Imagination written by Christina Evans, talks about this era digital technology, when used correctly, can actually be a way for young people to get involved with pressing issues around them. Young people today can decide late at night that they want to protest, or band together to share the same point and the next day show up somewhere and see hundreds or thousands of other young people who feel the same way. Something that just a few decades ago would have taken weeks or maybe even months to plan can be created and planned in just a few short hours or days. Evans truly finds the positive aspects of digital uses in the lives of young people as a way for them to find a platform to stand up for what they believe in.
The blog I found, was written by a “chill dad” as he calls himself and he provided his readers with 10 reasons why screen time is okay, or even beneficial, for children. His reasons ranged from “we had screen time when we were young”, that it can be a lifesaver if your children can use screen time while on road trips, or that is allows parents to sleep in on weekends if your kids can be self sufficient while having screen time or that it just “gives parents a break”. To me, these reasons seemed to be reasons as to how screen time use for children can be beneficial to the parents, but never really finding or highlighting reasons as to how it benefits the child.
These feelings though are not too unusual form what I have found when I have searched the topic. I wonder how we can get away from these stigmas of screen time and find ways where parents can still use screen time in their children’s lives but perhaps find an educational or true beneficial way for them to use it? To my readers, what are your thoughts?