WXXI AM News

screen time

We talk about screen time and raising kids in the digital age. How much screen time is too much? How can we create and model good habits for kids?

Devorah Heitner is the author of "Screenwise: Helping Kids Thrive and Survive in Their Digital World." She’s in town as a guest of the Harley School, but first, she joins us on Connections to talk about tech-positive parenting. 

When we ask how much screen time is too much for kids, we're often thinking about screen time at home -- whether it's TV, videos games, or social media. But what about screen time at school?

An increasing number of schools are incorporating devices into their lesson plans. Should that screen time factor into overall limits for children? What's the difference between leisure screen time and screen time for education? Our guests discuss those questions and more. In studio:

  • Dr. Steve Cook, M.D., associate professor of pediatrics at Golisano Children's Hospital
  • Tony Tepedino, digital literacy teacher at Allendale Columbia School
  • Kristin Rorapaugh, president of the Allendale Columbia School Parents' Association

A high school teacher asked her students to turn their phone volumes up and asked them to record the number of notifications they received during a single class period. There were hundreds.

That sparked a debate about everything from cell phones as distractions, to the concern that child psychologists have about technology’s external rewards, such as notifications and likes. Our guests:

  • Leah Stacy, assistant professor in professional practice in English and communication at Nazareth College
  • Regan Wagner, English and communications and media major at Nazareth College
  • Dr. Dipesh Navsaria, M.D., associate professor of pediatrics at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health

If you’re a smartphone user, have you ever considered switching back to a “dumb” phone? According to the Pew Research Center, 95 percent of Americans own a cellphone, and the share of those that own a smartphone is 77 percent. But new research shows that there are a growing number of people who have ditched the smartphone for flip phones or other phones not connected to the Internet.

While it’s unlikely that we’ll ever be back to the days of brick phones or landlines, experts say the reasons behind the dumb phone gaining popularity – security, financial, mental health – are worth discussing. This hour, we have a conversation about technology, boundaries, and how our devices impact our health (and you can stream it on your smartphone). In studio:

  • Caitlin Whyte, reporter and host of Weekend Edition at WXXI
  • Dr. Eric Caine, M.D., former chair of the Department of Psychiatry at the University of Rochester
  • Mike Johansson, senior lecturer of communication at RIT, and social media consultant with Fixitology
  • Mark Sample, professor of history at MCC, and self-identified “dumb” phone user

Apple is responding to pressure from stakeholders to provide features on its devices that will allow parents to monitor and limit screen time for their children. In response, Apple announced a new app called Screen Time.

This hour, we discuss screen time recommendations for children and teens, and the role that both technology companies and healthcare providers have in working with parents to address issues regarding devices and internet use. Our guests: 

  • Dr. Elizabeth Murray, M.D., assistant professor of pediatrics and pediatrician at Golisano Children's Hospital
  • Dr. Steve Cook, M.D., associate professor of pediatrics and pediatrician at Golisano Children's Hospital
  • Dr. Dipesh Navsaria, M.D., associate professor of pediatrics at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health

Last fall, the American Academy of Pediatrics issued new recommendations for limiting media use among children. How can parents work under these guidelines and help their kids unplug and reconnect to non-digital activities?

A book called The Game is Playing Your Kid offers advice for monitoring and limiting screen time for children. The author, Dr. Joe Dilley, is in Rochester as a guest of the Norman Howard School. He joins us in studio to talk about how parents can help kids transition from overuse to more mindful use of technology. He's joined by Dr. Elizabeth Murray, assistant professor in the Department of Pediatrics at Golisano Children's Hospital.