Children of the New Age: The Problem of Children and Technology: Getting Kids Off Their Screens
We have a problem with children of the New Age, Children and Technology – Getting Kids Off Their Screens. I was recently at a family function which was held at a restaurant. There was a table designated for the children, which meant eleven children from the ages of five to twelve were seated together. The young cousins love hanging out with each other and it is not very often that they all get to see each other. As the day progressed I looked over to the children’s table and noticed that each one of them was playing on some device. “Ok everyone screens down. Hand over the iphones and ipads please.” Well that did not go down well. My request was met with protest, tears and anger not only from the children but from one of the parents.
“Leave them, at least we get some silence. It will be chaos otherwise”. My cousin insisted content that her rowdy crew of kids were occupied by screens.
“They’re children there’s meant to be chaos. They hardly see each other. I’m taking a stand, these kids have to socialise and make memories.” Turning to the kids I took all the devices from them. There was tongue pocking and angry little faces as they defiantly handed over the equipment. Comments such as “It’s not fair” and “You’re mean” were thrown at me. I could take the heat, I wouldn’t let them tear me down, after all I was doing it for them.
Within minutes of devices down the sound of children at play filled the restaurant. A glass was knocked over smashing all over the floor, there was laughter, someone stuck their finger in the engagement cake, there was arguing, children running around others playing hide and seek, and the general joyous mayhem of children having fun.
“See what you’ve done” my cousin joked.
It was without a doubt a more civilised environment when they were on their devices. But they were now engaged with each other and the family. Socialising and making memories are vital to a healthy growing being, regardless of how much easier it is to keep them quiet in front of a screen.