Seven Times As Likely To Have ADHD

Compared with children who had less than 30 minutes of screen time per day, children exposed to more than two hours were five times more likely to exhibit clinically significant “externalizing” behavioural problems such as inattention — and are more than seven times more likely to meet the criteria for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD),

This is a new study from Canada.

Current Canadian guidelines call for no more than two hours of screen time a day at that age. But our research suggests that less screen time is even better.

Government guidelines vary from country to country. The worldwide scientific consensus is that the best amount of screen time including smartphones, tablets, and televisions, is zero.

Rewards And Punishments Become A Prison

Researchers investigated the impact of parenting practices on the amount of time young children spend in front of screens. They found a majority of parents use screen time to control behavior, especially on weekends. This results in children spending an average of 20 minutes more a day on weekends in front of a screen. Researchers say this is likely because using it as a reward or punishment heightens a child’s attraction to the activity.

We don’t use rewards and punishments because they have unpredictable results!

With The Information Superhighway You Can Be Everywhere

Might a few stolen moments used to check a couple text messages have a deeper effect?

While more research is needed, the study suggests it might: Even low or seemingly normal amounts of tech-related interruption were associated with greater child behavior problems, such as oversensitivity, hot tempers, hyperactivity and whining.

The best classrooms I’ve seen simply do not allow smartphones or tablets or screens of any kind on the premises. Leave them in a box outside.

Reserving certain times of the day or locations as being technology-free—such as mealtime or playtime right after work—may help ease family tensions caused by the modern blurring of outside worlds with home life, they say.

Feeling Lucky? Give Your Kid A Smartphone

After looking at language delay, the findings showed that the more time a child spent with a handheld device, the more likely the child was to have delays in speech, with each 30-minute increase in handheld screen time resulting in a 49-percent increased risk of speech delay.

A half-hour per day is a coin-flip. Tails, you can’t make certain sounds with your mouth.

Put Down Your Phone

This mother wrote a piece about her children, and her screens.

“Put… down… your phone,” sputtered my ruddy-cheeked, then 20-month-old toddler, tightly clutching her Dr Seuss’ Mr Brown Can Moo board-book.

It was one of her first complete sentences.

Friends who are parents of older children tell us unanimously to delay the introduction of personal digital devices and to regulate screen usage thereafter. Children will have no problems mastering them later, they say.

Of course not. They’re large market consumer devices. They’re easy enough for anyone to use. They’re not challenging. That’s the point — easy, habitual use.

My three children, now in kindergarten and nursery, neither watched television nor played with personal digital devices the first two years of their lives. The screen embargo was lifted temporarily on only two occasions: for the National Day Parade live telecast and for FaceTime when my husband travelled abroad.

Our television set was a white elephant. I consider this a feat, given how we used to eagerly catch the latest programmes in our once child-free life. (Game Of Thrones in recent years? BBC’s Sherlock? Forget it.)

But I suppose these efforts were well worth it. We enjoyed our children climbing onto our laps and clamouring to be read to, embarking on “good old-fashioned” pursuits like climbing at the playgrounds, doodling, dancing and simply goofing around – activities we loved for growing their imaginations.

I high-fived my husband when my elder twins hit the age of two, before which the American Academy of Paediatrics recommended no screen exposure (although this guideline has recently been changed to 18 months).

How Are Those Screens Working?

Many caregivers have been using screens with toddlers, and it’s been going… not good.

“One of the problems could be that we need more materials curated specifically for preschool teachers,” Wartella said. “Teachers may be struggling to find appropriate content to use on tablets with young children for specific lessons and may therefore be experiencing less excitement about the technology.

Golly if only someone had curated materials specifically for children age six and under.