Screen time is the use of digital devices to consume, create and communicate in our technology rich world. As we prepare students to be Future Ready for our 21st Century teaching and learning environments, it's important to teach and model best practices for using technology safely and effectively.
Why It’s Important
Whether you work directly with students or you have children/grandchildren, we all interact with technology that is changing how we learn and communicate on a daily basis. We all play an important role in helping students learn to manage their own use of technology independently and appropriately. Screen time is an important discussion to revisit frequently with children from elementary school through high school. This effort requires a partnership between parents and educators to help students manage their use of technology. The resources presented here will provide guidance and resources to help parents and educators better support students for the 21st Century.
The use of technology in our classrooms has become common place and is no longer used for isolated learning activities. The use of digital resources provides teachers will more immediate feedback to adjust instruction and provides students with greater access to interact meaningfully with technology using the 4 C’s of Communication, Collaboration, Critical Thinking, and Creativity. In ISD728 we are emphasizing the use of Blended Learning Strategies as a framework to deliver meaningful activities using combination of online and face to face interactions. Below are a few resources that describe key components of blended learning.
Blended Learning Components:
- Encourages one on one or small group instruction combined with self-paced learning activities.
- Empowers learners with more voice and choice in their learning path.
- Allows learners to have more control over the pacing of instruction.
- Delivers individualized content for learners.
Check out the short video clip below that describes how blended learning can be used to provide meaningful student engagment.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recognizes the effects of media use are multifactorial and depend on the type of media and the type of use. (AAP November 2016) It’s essential to understand that not all screen time is created equally. What's more important is the quality of kids' media, how it fits into your family's lifestyle, and how you engage your kids with it. (Common Sense Media)
The idea of screen time as a one-dimensional activity is changing -- even the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), whose screen time rules had been strictly age-based, is recognizing that not all screen time is created equal. Computers, tablets, and smartphones are multipurpose devices that can be used for lots of purposes. Designating their use simply as "screen time" can miss some important variations. The Common Sense Census: Media Use by Tweens and Teens identifies four main categories of screen time.
Passive consumption: watching TV, reading, and listening to music
Interactive consumption: playing games and browsing the Internet
Communication: video-chatting and using social media
Content creation: using devices to make digital art or music
Guidelines for Parents
Create a Family Media Plan. By creating a Personalized Family Media Use Plan, you can be aware of when you are using media to achieve your purpose. This resource will help you to think about media & create goals & rules that are in line with your family’s values.
Use the Media Time Calculator to encourage a more thoughtful use of screen time.
Use the Family Media Agreement. A healthy media diet balances three things: what kids do, how much time they spend doing it, and whether their content choices are age-appropriate. Mixing media and tech time with other activities will help families find that happy medium.
Review the “Make Room for Healthy Media Choices” poster.
Read the Media Tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics.
Examine the Media Use in School-Aged Children and Adolescents recommendations for Families.
Review the Screen Time and Device Management Resources
- View the Diane Saywer Part I (8:41) and Part II (6:49) Video Series
View the Digital Wellness Screen Time Presentation for useful "tips" on Managing screen time.