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Tech-Savvy Parenting: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly of Screen Time

As parents of students in the K-12 system, it is important to consider the impact of screen time on our students. While technology can be a valuable tool for learning and engagement, it is also important to be aware of the potential negative effects of excessive screen time, such as decreased attention span, sleep problems, and social isolation.

One way to approach this issue is to differentiate between "good" and "bad" screen time. Good screen time refers to activities that support learning and education, such as online research for a project, interactive educational games, and virtual field trips. Bad screen time refers to activities that are not educational or do not contribute to a student's overall well-being, such as playing video games for hours on end, browsing time-wasting websites, and excessive use of social media.

To support the use of good screen time in the classroom, here are five examples of great applications that students can use to learn, play, or research:

  1. Khan Academy - This non-profit education platform provides free, high-quality educational resources, including video lessons, interactive exercises and quizzes, and practice problems on a wide range of subjects.

  2. Duolingo - This language-learning app offers fun, interactive lessons in over 30 languages and can be used by students of all ages and levels.

  3. NASA Climate Kids - This website offers interactive games, videos, and activities that teach students about climate change and its effects on our planet.

  4. Scratch - This visual programming language is designed for kids and allows them to create interactive games, animations, and stories.

  5. National Geographic Kids - This website offers a wide range of educational resources, including articles, videos, and games, covering various subjects such as science, geography, and history.

Now, let's talk about the bad screen time examples,

  1. Social media: excessive use of social media can lead to feelings of isolation and negative impact on mental health.

  2. Online gaming: excessive gaming can lead to addiction and other negative impacts on physical and mental health.

  3. Time-wasting websites: browsing non-educational websites, such as memes or viral videos can distract students from their academic work and lead to poor performance.

To supplement these negative behaviors online, educators can encourage students to set limits on their screen time, make a schedule for their online activities, and engage in physical activities or spend time outdoors. Encourage them to take short breaks to avoid prolonged screen time, and remind them that a balance is needed between online and offline activities. For more information, tips, or strategies, please feel free to reach out to us anytime:

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