Parents have asked about technology and their children, particularly the use of smartphones, video games, and sites like TikTok. The New York Times is publishing a very good series on adolescent health. While direct proof is scarce, there are strong correlations between the rise of technology, less sleep, less in-person social life, and less outdoors with more depression among kids.
We always recommend that parents:
1. Postpone giving students smartphones as long as you can.
2. Make sure you have an agreement about tech (time and place) in the family. I attached a sample from Common Sense Media.
3. Make sure you agree with your child that the phone belongs to the adults. Have your child’s passwords and check the content of the phone from time to time.
4. Protect sleep, meals, outdoor activity and social-in-person time.
5. Make sure the phone does not make it into the bedroom at night. “It is my alarm clock!!” is the first excuse (of many). Resist!!
Common Sense Media has good resources for parents. www.commonsensemedia.org Tab: Parents Need to Know. Here is a family media agreement for your reference.
By Head of School, Nelyda Miguel