It should be no surprise when teenagers and parents don't see eye-to-eye when it comes to the use of technology for playing, learning, and living. Scheduled program options on radio and television have taken a backseat to online entertainment, with its immediate, repeatable, and seemingly limitless access to recreation and fun. Modern school curricula require the use of online textbooks, videos, and other resources for teaching in the classroom as well as completion of assignments by students at home. (Lack of fast Internet access at home has been shown put those students at a disadvantage academically.) And nowadays, more and more social interactions, both peer-to-peer as much as stranger-to-stranger, take place virtually rather than face-to-face - for parents and their offspring alike. Parents like Marybeth Bock know the score:
Teens know what's going on also. A recent national survey of teenage smartphone addiction indicates just how much mobile technology and social media have taken over the lives of youth. Bock says the findings of the survey “glaringly demonstrate that our teens acknowledge the negative consequences of their phone behaviors, yet many can't seem to self-regulate.”:
19-year-old Bailey Danielson is a tech savvy teen in a tech savvy world. Writing on PediMom, a terrific blog from pediatrician Dr. Free N. Hess, Danielson says she got her first smartphone at the end of middle school, which was late compared to her peers:
What parents view as “common sense” precautions when advising their children about using smartphones and social media responsibly (“Don't post stupid content and don't interact with strangers”) often differs from the teenager's point of view (“Post during prime traffic hours, post content that makes me look cool, and get as many followers, likes, and comments as possible”), says Danielson. Teens also have the common sense needed to outsmart their parents' restrictions and monitoring strategies:
Parent Bock thinks parents need to get a grip and gain control over the situation, beginning with:
But this idea may go over like a lead balloon in your house:
Teenager Danielson takes a softer, if not more realistic approach:
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