Skip to comments.Teachers Say Media-Use Is Harming Kidsí Performance
Posted on 11/18/2012 4:50:47 PM PST by mdittmar
A new study released on Thursday finds teachers are concerned that the amount and types of electronic media that children interact with at home may be harming their performance in the classroom.
Common Sense Media, a think tank focused on childrens media use, polled 685 public and private elementary and high school classroom teachers on how childrens increasing use of television, video games, texting, social networking, music and other forms of media is affecting their performance in school.
The study found that 71% of teachers polled said students media use hurts their attention spans in school, while 59% said students use of entertainment media has also harmed their ability to communicate face to face. A slightly smaller amount, 58%, said they believe its had a negative impact on their writing skills, according to the study conducted by Knowledge Networks May 5-17.
Nearly half of the teachers surveyed also said their students use of media at home is hurting the quality of their homework. Many teachers think students spend so much time with media that they neglect their homework and arent prepared in class, according to the report, which noted that children between the ages of 8 and 18 spend more than seven-and-a-half hours a day using media for fun.
Elementary school teachers pointed to video games, television, and computer games as causing the most problems for their students, while teachers said middle and high school students are more negatively impacted by texting and social networking. Two-thirds of teachers also said they believe that entertainment media has a very or somewhat negative impact on students sexualization.
Still, teachers did point to some benefits from students increased use of entertainment media at home with 63% saying it has helped students find information more quickly and efficiently, while a minority, 34%, said they believe it has improved students ability to multitask.
We know that our children learn from the media they consume. This survey is yet another reminder of how critical it is to consistently guide our kids to make good media choices and balance the amount of time they spend with any media and all of their other activities, Common Sense Media founder and CEO James Steyer said in a statement.
I'm down to about 1000 paper books in the house, including my special collection, and quit buying paper books this year, unless they are antique or collectible.
I did become more comfortable with e-books over the last few years and this is the year I changed over for purchases.
E-books. Very little 'lektrikity required.
I've got lots of dead tree books, some printed 100 years before I was born. Many more that I bought in airports right before a flight. Some from estate sales I went to in the '80s and bought libraries in whole lots.
I'm comfortable buying e-books and reading them. I find them to be more handy and convenient than my shelves full of books.
And yet...once they fell out of favour, they faced a life of ruination and poverty - that is, if they got out alive. Many were executed by the King when they became liabilities or when the King decided that he was being used. In the U.K., until Beau Brummel came along, every favourite ended his swath-cutting by either being executed or banished to a ruined life.
After looking at some of the liberal hysterics during election season, I'm tempted - even though it has a tincture of pop-psychology jargon - to think of them as suffering from "King's Favourite Syndrome." Many of them really believe that they falling out of favour with the federal government will ruin them. They're like a fellow who holds onto his job at all costs, convinced that if he loses his present job he's destined to die on welfare. Only in their case, their "company" is the government.
Should that dumbing-down continue, the syndrome will only get worse because it'll have more basis in truth. One of the "meta-educations" kids got in the olden days was how to be resourceful. Now, it all seems to be crowdsourcing: asking around.
Today's children can be and are resoureful, and have specialized skillsets.
I postulate that a world shift has happend that requires, simply by virtue of complexity, that no person can know everything, or even be familiar with everything.
Linux is probably the most widespread server operating system in the world, and no single person can grasp the whole of it. It is 'crowdsourced', with no central authority, except over the kernel, and that's not very centralized.
The founding fathers’ standard education included Greek and Latin and Hebrew from early years. It would have been unthinkable that they wouldn’t study these - and Hebrew - if they were going to be well-educated. That generation had the option of giving their commencement addresses in Latin, Greek, or Hebrew. They learned all three well and their studies in the languages started very young.
Just using books, the library, etc weren't good enough.
“Their attention span went away when Sesame Street came on the scene in the 60’s”
I absolutely agree completely. So called educational TV programming gave rise to the “edutainment” mindset from toddlerhood. If not being electronically entertained, they are “bored”. And the short segment bursts of images encourage ADD and lack of concentration, even if it is the alphabet dancing about on the screen.
I severely limited our own daughters access to TV, with no NPR programming, and emphasized reading from a young age. Three are early 20 somethings - one is an ER nurse, one is a 3L at a top tier law school and will graduate at just 23 years old (is on law journal - any FReeper lawyers hiring in the NYC area?), one is an Acting BFA major and the high school freshman just received her report card with a 95 average taking all honors/regents courses. This is a total brag and anti TV rant, but it is proof (even if anecdotal) that we are correct about Sesame Street.
Too much information, not enough knowledge.
I'd hate to say how many grade-school teachers I have taught to add fractions.
Teachers are the Communist Party’s ‘useful idiots’...or are outright members of the party.
I guess I am in the middle here. I like being able to carry around a library in a tablet; but there is also something to be said for Dead Tree books. There is a whole other experience to reading missing from e-books. The texture of the paper, the typeface, the solid weight of the book, the binding, the tactile feel of turning a page; all of these things add to the art of reading.
It isn’t a budget issue, it’s the application. Kids see computers, iPads, iPhones, iPods and the like as toys, NOT learning tools.
In addition, I will be quite surprised to see what the maintenance costs on these devices will be. Unless the kids, themselves have to pay for it, it’s just another free toy and they will be neither careful nor respectful of the instrument.
I’ve been their age and I have been a teacher. I know how these devices will be treated and I think it is worse than a bad idea to try to use them as an educational tool.
Using the iPad to take notes is fine. That’s not the issue. The issue is schools using them as educational tools to replace textbooks.
Kids know these items as toys for playing games, accessing the Internet, email, Facebok, Twitter and the like. The mindset is already there and trying to convert that mindset to use the device as an educational tool wil be an uphil climb.
In the long run, I think it is a diservice to the kids and serves as a distraction from the learning environment.
I understand what you are saying and do agree with you about districts using them as a replacement for textbooks. Nor should they be provided by the schools.
Where I disagree with you is what I perceive as a broadbrush condemnation that all kids see them only as toys/entertainment. Today’s kids have been exposed to them in a learning environment for nearly as long as they’ve been in school, even when they don’t have access in the home.
This will be a good case study.
I’ve got connections at both schools.
Will report back in a year.
Well, I have taught school as well as being a technical trainer and have seen what is coming out of public indoctrination. It’s not good.
As a technical trainer, we had to turn off Internet access in the classroom to keep our customers’ (students) minds in the classroom and not surfing. Even with that, they would get on the computers in the classroom and play solitaire. So, I think I know a little whereof I speak.
This is a bad trend that defocuses on learning and gives the kids a toy to play with. I’ve seen it before and had to deal with it.
And the impact can last a lifetime. At my 30 year class reunion I shared a conversation with 3 people from elementary school. I had not seen them in 30 years. We were all in the same 6th grade class in the late sixties. We all unanimously agreed that our teacher, Mr. Farley was the best teacher any of us had ever had. Not even a close call. We all vividly remembered his class room and what an extraordinary teacher and human being he was. Tough but strong. Honestly, he taught us things like the gold standard and the stock market. Things that I know to this day. God Bless him, but the very sad part is that I also learned he had passed away when he was only 59.
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