Kids, like me, have become attached to their electronics, and it is hard to go a long time without them. There are many harmful effects due to screen time, as many kids are addicted now. Staring at the screen excessively can cause major eye problems, headaches, and a loss of concentration, and productivity. It could also cause kids to be isolated from their family/friends, and to be disengaged from the outside world. Personally, along with many kids, I had to get blue light glasses as an attempt to block out the light as my head began to hurt from the screen.
— Tatia Goldberg, United States
No Better Alternative
I think that we should be worried about screen time after the pandemic rather than screen time during, the screen time is one of the only safe ways for people to get human interaction. There should be some concerns for screen time after the pandemic however, because then it would be safe for interaction off of the screen which is overall better anyway but, if people get too attached to the online interaction and activities it could become a big problem.
I do agree that screen time can be addictive and have negative effects but they are a better alternative to going out and doing things with friends during the pandemic and the off chance of getting COVID. While not everything of the screen time is a downside, people are becoming more technologically fluent and that can be great for future endeavors and could even become a career path for some. Overall I think that the screen time has its pros and cons but there isn’t really a better alternative right now.
— Austen, MN
While I agree spending time on our screens for an excessive amount of time can be detrimental to our health, I don’t think it’s something we can avoid especially during this past year. I understand during discussions like these why there is a much larger concern placed on kids/teens (our brains being considered “plastic” and therefore more “malleable”), but I think to a degree, everyone, no matter their age, has been affected by social media. Many of us have probably fallen into the trap of scrolling for just a bit longer when it’s way past our normal bed time.
Likewise, there’s nothing you CAN’T do without technology now. Want to start a new hobby that involves arts and crafts? Search up an Instagram profile for inspiration or watch YouTube videos that give you tutorials on how to do it. Want to learn how to code? Search up YouTube videos, partake in forums, or maybe even look at how code works in various types of video games. Given how the internet and our brains work, it’s difficult NOT to get carried away when doing these things. Once you find something that intrigues you on the internet, you’re almost bound to fall into the rabbit hole. In the end, quarantine really hasn’t done much, but show the world how true this is, and what it looks like in its worst/best forms.
— Ariel, Illinois
Concerns Are Exaggerated.
The points in this article are beyond exaggerated, in my perspective. I think screen time, at least during the pandemic, is super important. It is the only way to connect to the outside world while we are separated from it. For me, I spent much of my quarantine on devices, whether it was my laptop or my phone. Sure, excessive use can be damaging, but not every child uses it the same. Interaction with others or social skills is highly important in the 21st century. For me, I used “screen time” to educate myself more on current events such as BLM and the upcoming election.
— Kayla Christy, Hatfield, PA
The increased screen time shouldn’t be regarded as an issue in my opinion because there are very few activities and events to look forward to outside at this time; the world is already getting closer to technology being the main focus as the future nears closer. My screen time has increased a fair amount, but that is an inevitable effect of new technology advancements that continue to introduce themselves. I spend about 10 hours on some kind of screen, and that includes school hours online (5 hrs), video games (2-3 hrs), and entertainment on YouTube or something (2-3 hrs). I don’t feel that excessive screen time is an issue though as most people are on their screen for longer than me a day for their jobs.
— Kevin, IL