2 Replies Latest reply: Nov 11, 2013 12:33 AM by Lynne Hoffman RSS

Should children have daily limits on screentime?

Lynne Hoffman Apprentice
Currently Being Moderated

Are today's children spending too much time looking at screens--computers, laptops, iPads, Smartphones, and more?  What do you think of limiting children's screentime to 2 hours per day (that includes school and home)?  If you agree, then you support the position of the American Academy of Pediatrics.  Physicians argue that too much screentime leads to the following problems in children:

  • obesity
  • irregular sleep
  • inappropriate behavior
  • impaired academic performance
  • violence
  • less time for play

What do you think of these reasons for limiting screentime?


I recommend reading Liz Nielsen's blog--"Think twice before limiting screentime"--published in the Tech & Learning Tech Forum.  (February 23, 2013)


What do you think of Nielsen's arguments for NOT limiting screentime for children? 

Where do you stand on this important question?

  • Re: Should children have daily limits on screentime?
    mso Novice
    Currently Being Moderated

    This is an important question for us to consider as community leaders, educators and parents.

    My initial reaction was that limiting is a good idea, however Nielsen poses some powerful points regarding the Internet as a window of opportunity to explore the world. Holding students back from such opportunities is almost "anti-education".

    I suppose we need to consider the necessary role the Internet plays in our society, both informational, educational and social/recreational and find ways to compensate for the sedentary lifestyle "screentime" promotes.

    We also need to consider HOW children spend their screentime, and encourage wise use of and quality time on the Internet; especially to avoid exposure to the violence of many "screen games". (A persuasisve writing topic that one of my students wrote about this week!)

    To limit all "screen time" to just 2 hours, is not a viable suggestion, in my opinion. However, setting boundaries and rules about lifestyle balances and quality use of "screentime" should be an alternative recommendation.

    Thanks Lynne for this thought provoking question!

  • Re: Should children have daily limits on screentime?
    Lynne Hoffman Apprentice
    Currently Being Moderated

    Tech & Learning published a blog by Lisa Nielsen titled "Stop trying to figure out if screentime is good for students" (November 3, 2013) that suggests we need to focus on the advantages of screentime rather than criticizing students for spending hours on the computer.


    The blogger raises this question:  "Would we oppose children having too much time reading, writing, calculating, researching, connecting, discussing, communicating, finding answers, creating, publishing, and sharing?"  Of course not.  Aren't students using computers to accomplish these tasks?


    The writer contends that "while traditional educators may not yet be comfortable giving up control, access to screens and all they offer, is essential for the success of most people in our modern world."


    How important is screentime for success in today's society? 

    Are traditional educators (those who still like lecturing and requiring students to take notes with paper and pencil) making the negatives of screentime an issue? 

    Is screentime really good for students?  How do you determine the appropriate amount of screentime for students?

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