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What do we really know about the effects of screen time on mental health?

What do we really know about the effects of screen time on mental health? | Must Read articles: Apps and eBooks for kids | Scoop.it
Pete Etchells: A recent briefing from Public Health England warns that too much screen time is causing emotional problems in children. But is it that simple?

 

(...) But what do we actually know about the effects of screen time on childhood development? It's actually a really tough question to answer, in part because "screen time" is a pretty rubbish concept. It takes into account the use of anything that has a screen – TVs, mobile phones, games consoles and tablets. In a sense, it's easy to see how it's a compelling measure to use: it's a simple idea that everyone can easily relate to. The trouble is, it doesn't really do justice to the sheer diversity of content that screen-based technology can provide. For instance, two hours of watching Teletubbies is probably going to affect our behavior in a completely different way to playing Halo for a couple of hours (although it's questionable which one will do the more damage).

@CotCotCotApps's insight:

Questionmark about (1) the distinction between passive and active screen time and (2) thorough research re. long-term effects of screen time on childhood development

 

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Children who read on iPads or Kindles have weaker literacy skills and are less likely to enjoy it as a pastime, charity warns / @MailOnline

Children who read on iPads or Kindles have weaker literacy skills and are less likely to  enjoy it as a pastime, charity warns / @MailOnline | Must Read articles: Apps and eBooks for kids | Scoop.it

A survey, conducted by The National Literacy Trust, found that 52 per cent of children preferred to read on an electronic device - including e-readers, computers and smartphones - while only 32 per cent said they would rather read a physical book. 

Worryingly, only 12 per cent of those who read using new technology said they really enjoyed reading, compared with 51 per cent of those who favoured books.

Pupils who get free school meals, generally a sign they are from poorer backgrounds, are the least likely group to pick up a traditional book, the research found.

The poll of 34,910 young people aged between eight and 16 across the UK found that those who read printed texts were almost twice as likely to have above-average reading skills as those who read on screens every day. 

The study also found that children were more likely to have their own computer than their own desk.

Jonathan Douglas, the director of the National Literacy Trust, said: 'While we welcome the positive impact which technology has on bringing further reading opportunities to young people, it's crucial that reading in print is not cast aside.

 

 
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App reviews: how to find quality apps and eBooks for kids - CotCotCot-apps.com

App reviews: how to find quality apps and eBooks for kids - CotCotCot-apps.com | Must Read articles: Apps and eBooks for kids | Scoop.it

We started listing resources websites for our "Essential iPad Guide for Parents" included in our games app "Appy Tips and Tricks for Kids"... and decided to provide a more thorough overview of the kids apps curation sector. 


So, if you’re having trouble finding quality applications for your family, or if you’re simply looking to keep up with new releases, we suggest visiting the websites of the following kids apps reviewers...

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American Families See Tablets as Playmate, Teacher and Babysitter | Nielsen Wire

The rise of gadgets is ushering in a new generation of kids who are growing up digital.
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The surprising iPad rival in education that isn't a tablet, laptop or desktop - Tabtimes via Teachers with Apps

The surprising iPad rival in education that isn't a tablet, laptop or desktop - Tabtimes via Teachers with Apps | Must Read articles: Apps and eBooks for kids | Scoop.it
Education has been quick to jump on the tablet bandwagon by deploying iPads and a handful of Windows 8 and Android tablets. But in one surprising new twist the iPad finds itself under threat in the classroom from a different form factor altogether.

 

(...) 

Running Google’s Chrome OS, the Chromebook allows users access to web applications only and has been generally well-received, even if some reviewers have been quick to note its limitations.

“A Chromebook cannot do everything that a Windows PC or a Mac (of even a Linux PC) can do. It can’t even do everything that a tablet can do. For one thing, the selection of games is very limited though there is, of course, Angry Birds,” wrote seasoned tech journalist Steve Wildstrom recently for Tech-pinions.

“But it is very good at what it does well, and for a large number of people, it would be a more than adequate replacement for a conventional PC”.

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Bibliotech: 6 concerns about trends in digital collection development

Bibliotech: 6 concerns about trends in digital collection development | Must Read articles: Apps and eBooks for kids | Scoop.it

I have concerns about the way eCollections are developing – particularly the following emerging trends in K-12 library programs. 

 

The following statements are based on conversations I've had in edWeb.net/emergingtech, and on the conference circuit with fellow school librarians in other districts. 

(1) Administrators/Board of Education members confuse owning eContent with technology integration.

(2) Administrators/Board of Education members “gift” libraries with iPads/Kindles/Nooks, but fail to provide additional funding for eContent/apps, or tech support to manage them.

(3) Libraries replace print with eContent, without making curricular adjustments to their instructional program to teach students and teachers how to access eContent.

(4) Librarians feel compelled to acquire eContent from only one distributor because it is too confusing – for them, for students, for teachers, for business managers - to purchase eContent from a variety of distributors, thus materials selection is driven by who they buy from, not what aligns with the curriculum.

(5) Distributors are “packaging” eContent, and marketing these packages as Common Core aligned, or standards aligned. (...) It is our job to develop our collections, aligning them with our school/district’s curriculum – not to buy ready-made packages from vendors. 

(6) eContent requires meticulous, patron-aware (rather than traditional) cataloging.  It is virtually (no pun intended) impossible to “display” eContent. There is no way to physically put it in the hands of students, if students are using their own technology.

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Don't Burn Your Books---Print Is Here to Stay

Don't Burn Your Books---Print Is Here to Stay | Must Read articles: Apps and eBooks for kids | Scoop.it
The e-book had its moment, but sales are slowing. Readers still want to turn those crisp, bound pages, writes Nicholas Carr.

 

" The growth in e-book sales is slowing markedly. And purchases of e-readers are actually shrinking, as consumers opt instead for multipurpose tablets. It may be that e-books, rather than replacing printed books, will ultimately serve a role more like that of audio books—a complement to traditional reading, not a substitute."

@CotCotCotApps's insight:

Nicholas Carr, a 2010 Pulitzer finalist with “The Shallows,” (exploring the distracting nature of digital culture), writes here an interesting piece about ebooks and the unexpected resilience of traditional books! 

 

... which is not contradictory to our core belief that ebooks and apps are no direct competitors to pbooks but rather co-exist with other reading format, complement or extend the reading experience. 

 

eBooks and apps are no revolution per se but an evolution: "E-books, in other words, may turn out to be just another format—an even lighter-weight, more disposable paperback. That would fit with the discovery that once people start buying digital books, they don't necessarily stop buying printed ones."

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