As we think back to the past when we grew up, it’s fascinating to see the changes we’ve encountered as we try to understand the problems that our children face today. In the past, we as kids were known to play outdoors riding bicycles, climbing trees, playing tag, and interacting with our friends. Many of our families would often spend quality time together as a family. Our family time was time spent playing board games, cards, and talking to each other. At the end of the day, our family would sit together at the dinner table. We would gather together to have dinner and chat about our day. This is rarely the case today; we all lead pretty busy lives along with this invention called technology which is taking over our societies. Technology’s impact on the 21st-century family is fracturing its very foundation and causing a disintegration of core values that long ago were the fabric that held families together (Rowan, 2013). In today’s digital world, technology has changed the way our children engage in these tasks. As a result of this technology, children spend a lot more time on their smartphones, watching television, on a tablet, or playing video games. A 2010 Kaiser Foundation study showed that elementary aged children use on average 7.5 hours per day of entertainment technology (Rowan, 2013). Technology has shown us the positive and negative effects of technology usage that essentially has influenced our children’s development. Below, we will discuss and clarify the effects of technology on our children today.Prior to television shows, music, movies, and the world-wide-web, kids were far more family-oriented and school-oriented. We didn’t have smart devices to take away from family or school. Our role models were not made up of fictional characters or controversial actors made popular for their unusual activities. Today our children find these types of people interesting and look up to them as role models. Our children should have role models consisting of real people who fight for others. These people should set great examples as well. This is so that our children can learn and understand how to be part of their society. These role models should be people like educators, nurses, or our service members. As the nation continues to advance in today’s society, the most famous actors, musicians, or athletes are not always model citizens. Some of these individuals are notorious for doing drugs, and they’re unfortunately making a public embarrassment of themselves. If children keep watching these types of content, their actions could get worse. Children now rely on technology for the majority of their play, grossly limiting challenges to their creativity and imaginations, as well as limiting necessary challenges to their bodies to achieve optimal sensory and motor development (Rowan, 2013). The long-term impact of technology on childhood development is currently unclear, but it is evident that technology is definitely affecting our kids today.Another growing problem stemming from the overuse of technological advances is the level of disruption among our kids who have a continuous connection to social networks. The impact of heavy media and technology use on kids’ social, emotional and cognitive development is only beginning to be studied, and the emergent results are serious (Clinton and Steyer, 2012). As adolescents attempt to complete tasks, they really have more difficulty concentrating and not paying much attention to irrelevant information, which in turn is more stressful. Nowadays, children turn out to be more distracted, becoming socially awkward as they depend on technology to communicate with one another. Most children today lack communication skills. It is hard for them to step away from their devices and communicate with people. With today’s technology, which is changing swiftly, it is possible a child will develop physiological, psychological, and behavioral disorders. Researchers continue to find that these conditions may arise when younger children rely on such technologies. While the research is still in its early stages, it suggests that the Internet may actually be changing how our brains work (Clinton and Steyer, 2012). Child obesity and diabetes are now national epidemics in both Canada and the U.S., causally related to technology overuse (Rowen, 2013). It could be argued that diabetes and obesity are linked to consuming too many sugars and fats with little to no physical activity, but also keep in mind that certain technology can be controlled easily while seated. It, therefore, raises the likelihood of diabetes and obesity in our youth.Technology can affect our younger children as they play video games and watch adult-rated videos. Most of this media can have an impact on a child’s moral principles. Such kinds of material should always be supervised by all guardians on what their children should be allowed to watch, or video games they play. Violent video games can lead to a child becoming aggressive toward other children and grown-ups. According to research, playing video games releases dopamine and produces effects that are similar to drug cravings which can result in addiction (Albarado Ortiz, 2017). A kid may mimic a behavior on what they see, and that kind of behavior can affect other children. Children are using technology to bully others through social media. This is becoming a huge problem and has caused deep concerns. Where do we draw the line? We all know that it is hard to watch our children’s every move and what they are doing all the time. We as parents still need to set limits when it comes to watching television, playing video games, and spending time on their devices to help reduce their screen time.Since we live in the digital world, technology is readily available for our kids to use. As parents, we need to restrict their use of technology, but since our children must use technology, there is no way to get rid of it. We need to set up parental controls on devices that our children use. We should also limit their time when playing video games or playing on a phone. By limiting their time on their devices, it might encourage them to go outdoors, read an actual book rather than an electronic book, and have family time without a smart device in reach. It’s important to realize that our children are watching us a lot of the time. They see us using our smartphones constantly, and we must set a better example as parents. How do we expect them to follow rules on limiting their screen time, when we are not limiting ours? Parents still need to set certain guidelines for our children, when using various devices. As we grew up, we’ve all seen the way technology has changed over the years. From where it was to where it is currently. We’ve come to accept how technology has made life a lot simpler for all of us. While no one can argue the benefits of advanced technology in today’s world, connection to these devices may have resulted in a disconnection from what society should value most, children (Rowan, 2013). Children today often depend on many of the devices that technology has offered, but we can’t ignore the negative effect. We need to continue to make progress as a society and continue to monitor how technology affects our children. At the end of the day, the only way this issue can change is if we as a society make a difference and are willing to make changes.In summary, technology and how much it affects our kids is an important matter. Kids are exposed to a wide range of devices and each kid is affected in their own way. You can see the positive and negative aspects of technology on our children and our society. There are many articles and research showing the impacts of technology on our children. Sometimes we don’t want to face the facts, but we must for the sake of our children. Their mental and physical health is on the line and it is very important. I believe we must get back to the basics. We need to put our devices down from time to time and communicate with each other face to face. We need to sit down more often than not as a family and communicate with our children. We need to set aside our electronic devices, turn off the TV and have a family meal. We need to talk to our children about their day what happened at school and any other events that may have happened. Our children have been so caught up in technology that they have forgotten who they are as individuals. From time to time, we need to break away from technology and social media. By doing this we will get closer as a family. Our children will be more accepting to take a break from their devices if we as parents are willing to take a break too. We need legislation, educational efforts and norms that reflect 21st-century realities to maximize the opportunities and minimize the risks for our kids. Only then will we be able to give them the safe, healthy childhood and adolescence they deserve (Clinton and Steyer, 2012). If we are not willing to make these changes the future of your children and their health will continue to decline. Our children are our future. If they fail, we will fail as a society. Let’s start making these changes and get our children back.
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