Streams

“The Touch-Screen Generation”

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Hanna Rosin, contributor to The Atlantic, looks at why young children—even toddlers—are spending more and more time with digital technology. Thousands of apps appealing to kids are released every year. In her article “The Touch-Screen Generation,” in the April issue of The Atlantic, she raises questions about the long-term cultural effects of extended screen time.

Guests:

Hanna Rosin
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Comments [14]

Ms. Rosin's entire premise seems to be based on opposing the notion that any touch-screen time is bad, and I agree with her on the point. However, do people really see things in such black and white terms? In response to concerns about kids and families sitting together in a restaurant, each absorbed in their own device, Rosin counters "well that was just one family on one day and you can't make judgments based on that," but she ignores the frequency in which this scenario is the case. After a while you're seeing a trend. Obviously there are productive ways to use a touch-screen device. There's no way the time my kids spend on Khan Academy is anything, but beneficial for them. It doesn't matter if they use a touch-screen, or something more archaic, like a desktop computer. But Rosin's positions are so defensive it makes me wonder if she works for Apple.

Mar. 26 2013 12:11 PM
FastEddy

This was perhaps one of the most unenlightening segments I have ever heard on the show. A journalistic approach to the subject could have introduced findings by the American Academy of Pediatrics, sleep research related to light emitted by screens, research of language and social development. Hanna Rosin's dismissive opining and familial anecdotes shed no light on the subject. Her stated intent to make parents feel good about letting their kids use tablets and other screen devices with her article seems have limited the rigor with which she approached her subject.

Mar. 21 2013 07:25 PM
Jul from BKLYN

Kudos to this guest who raises the point that every child is indeed different and judging parents based on a passing observation is unfair.

Comics, TV, Rock & Roll, Arcade games, home game consols, home computers, iphones, ipads have all been deemed to be detrimental to the youth of America. None has lived up to that claim, yet we keep insisting that the new items is the enemy.

Mar. 21 2013 02:09 PM
Jul from BKLYN

Kudos to this guest who raises the point that every child is indeed different and judging parents based on a passing observation is unfair.

Comics, TV, Rock & Roll, Arcade games, home game consols, home computers, iphones, ipads have all been deemed to be detrimental to the youth of America. None has lived up to that claim, yet we keep insisting that the new items is the enemy.

Mar. 21 2013 02:09 PM
Jill from NYC

It's ironic that someone like this guest, Hannah Rosin, would benefit by the distraction that touch screens can bring, in that maybe that would stop the runaway freight train of her incredibly irritating speech. She must have amazing lung power.

Mar. 21 2013 01:52 PM
Nick from UWS

Pathetic. Very sad that children now communicate with each through the sterile funnels of smart phones and video games and iPads, instead directly with each other. Manipulating images on an iPad creates NOTHING, and teaches a child NOTHING about the real world.

Mar. 21 2013 01:48 PM
Jane from Manhattan

Your guest says that parents shouldn't feel negatively about using iPads etc to keep their children occupied, based on the idea that the apps available are teaching their kids something valuable. While that may be true, the guilt that parents feel about using the devices is largely because of the "electronic babysitter" factor - when parents use these devices, they feel guilty because are not interacting with their children, or because they are allowing their children to be passively entertained rather than using their imagination or reading a book. As interactive and educational as the apps may be, they are REPLACING children's imaginations with pre-determined choices, rather than allowing the children to come up with their own ideas, or allowing them to learn to interact with the world around them. In NYC you see parents schlepping their kids to restaurants and then ignoring them, not making them part of the dinner table conversation, and allowing their own parenting skills to atrophy, by not having to address the issue - how do you deal with your kids when they get bored?

Mar. 21 2013 01:47 PM
Stephanie from Manhattan

What does your guest say then about the American academy of pediatrics recommendation of no screen time period before 2?

Mar. 21 2013 01:47 PM
Sally from Brooklyn, NY

I have an 11 year old son, and I find that he becomes very aggressive when he spends a lot of time on an electronic device, especially when playing video games. I limit screen time for him.

Mar. 21 2013 01:45 PM
fuva from harlemworld

The inevitability of kids' tech use is not the point.
They'll probably drive cars at some point too, but we don't plop them in front of the wheel at any ol' age...And when we do teach them to drive, we do it carefully and attentively.

Can the guest please get specific.

Mar. 21 2013 01:43 PM
Sarah

My cats are addicted to my ipad. We introduced them to "cat fishing" which is an app of fish that swim around and go away when you touch the screen. We can't use the ipad without a cat audience, waiting for their favorite game.

Mar. 21 2013 01:42 PM
foodaggro from Brooklyn

Our iPad has become a fantastic educational tool for our 21-month-old daughter. She loves using the touch screen technology with the Sesame St. and Yo Gabba Gabba apps, and other puzzle and game apps. No perceived negative effects from this, and she also plays with her regular toys.

Mar. 21 2013 01:41 PM
Myra Klockenbrink

My eight-year-old son is a genius at Minecraft.....Does that count for dispelling guilt?

Mar. 21 2013 01:41 PM
anonyme

my sister has been working as an OT with special needs children (and some "normal") for decades - she thinks ipads are really great for development.

Mar. 21 2013 01:33 PM

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