By Cris Rowan

Despite police reports and pediatrician citations, the recent Momo Suicide C hallen ge was determined by media to be fake . Hoax or not, the resurfacing Momo Suicide Challenge presents parents, teachers and governments with a hard to ignore fact - the internet is not a safe place for children, and we've known for years that the internet is not making our children happy. In 2018 Blue Cross Blue Shi eld Association release findings showing a 64% rise in depression in teens between 2013 and 2016 with the Center for Disease Control reporting in 2016 a concurrent 30% rise in suicide. Jean Twenge's 2017 research found that teens who spend five or more hours per day on their devices are 71 percent more likely to have one risk factor for suicide regardless of the content consumed. It is becoming increasing harder to ignore the real threats and harm posed to children and teens by spending long durations of unsupervis ed time in the virtual world. This failure to protect children and teens online originates with absolute disregard for child safety by the internet giants including WhatsApp, Facebook and YouTube. These platforms consistently use faulty and ineffective algorithms to screen content , often relying instead on parents to report inappropriate content...after their children have been exposed. Following is a historical detailing of seemingly forgotten events of equal or greater importance to the Momo Suicide Challenge indicating that we have known for some time the internet is an unsafe and unhappy 'virtual hole' which many children and youth unsuspectingly are falling into. The rise in these scary events indicate the urgent need by parents, teachers and governments to get involved and hold our social media and video gaming designers responsible and demand immediate changes to the internet to improve safety for children and youth. Until such time, parents and teachers are wise to prohibit use of unsupervised internet use in homes and school environments. Our children have a right to be safe and happy.

Free Open Discussion on the Safety of Our Children's Exposure to Wireless Radiation in School - March 25

Panel will feature experts in the field of environmental health and technology to speak on the impact of wireless radiation and ways
to combat it

Schools today use high-density mesh Wi-Fi networks which can create more intense microwave radiation exposures. This exposure to constantly-emitting microwave transmitters has scientifically documented health impacts that many parents and educators are unaware of. Learn more about what possible health risks children face when they are constantly exposed to wireless radiation throughout the day at school from mesh wireless networks.

Speakers include:
  • Ronald Melnick, Ph.D., Former Toxicologist of National Institute of Health (NIH), Senior Science Advisor, Environmental Health Trust
  • Dr. Martha Herbert, Assistant Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School
  • Dr. David O. Carpenter, Public Health Physician and Director of the Institute for Health and the Environment, a Collaborating Center of the World Health Organization
  • Frank Clegg, CEO of Canadians for Safe Technology and former long-time president of Microsoft Canada
  • Theodora Scarato, MSW, Executive Director, Environmental Health Trust
  • Cecelia Doucette, MTPW, Technology Safety Educator
Monday, March 25, 2019, from 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Shrewsbury Public Library, 609 Main Street, Shrewsbury, MA 01545, USA
Free admission, reservations are welcomed:

For further information, contact Sara Seng at

Digital Vortex Survival Guide: Behaviors, Digital Media, & the Brain

The digital world is designed to grab our attention through the allure of increased productivity, interactivity, and entertainment, all within instant reach of our smartphones and mobile devices. We have endless access to movies, social interactivity, music, games, and anything the human mind creates in a digital environment. Is this all good? Is this all bad? Healthy usage of digital media entertainment lies somewhere between one to three hours per day. The problem is the average child is overdosing on digital media entertainment at more than seven hours daily! Julie, Christie, and Dr. Doan approach this topic with neuroscience research, proven solutions, and Biblical wisdom. This workbook is designed to educate, increase awareness, and prevent your kids and family from being sucked into the digital vortex!

Coming Soon!

Balanced Technology Management Certification
BTM Champion Status Seal

Cris Rowan is creating an online training certification in Balanced Technology
Management (BTM) for parents, teachers and clinicians. Parents will be certified BTM Advisors, teachers certified BTM Facilitators, and clinicians certified BTM Instructors.

We'll keep you posted!

Foundation Series Workshop Schedule

April 17, 2019 - Prince Rupert, BC
Evening workshop for parents on impact of screens on children sponsored by Prince Rupert School District No 52.
Contact person: Johanna Larson,

April 18, 2019 - Prince Rupert, BC
Workshop on impact of screens on children  sponsored by Prince Rupert School District No 52.
Contact person: Johanna Larson,

July 20, 2019 - San Diego, California
Presentation on impact of technology on brain/body physiology to teens attending Camp Unplugged sponsored by Palomar Christian Conference Center.
Contact person: Christie Walsh 225-8535

Nov. 6-8, 2019 - Iquique, Chile
Guest speaker at the Congress of the Chilean Society of Psychiatry and Neurology of Childhood and Adolescence.
Contact person: Dr. Andrea Aguirre,

Other Workshops & Webinars

Families Managing Media 2018
The Screen Solution Workshops will leave you feeling equipped with the tools needed to help you reset your child's screen habits. From video games to smartphones, we'll show you how to make practical changes in your day-to-day life with proven strategies and replacement activities to establish a balanced screen use at different ages.

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Research and News Review
Childhood Development

By Lisa Rapaport February 4, 2019
Just one in 20 U.S. children and teens gets the amount of sleep, exercise and screen time that doctors recommend for optimal health, a new study suggests.

In 20 years a whole generation of adults will be 'functioning sub-optimally,' sleep expert warns.

By Halie Wenhold & Kristen Harrison January 25,
The preschool years set a precedent for lifelong habits integral to health. 

By Adrianne Pasquarelli & E.J. Schultz January 22
Brands are going after kids under age 10, who are fast emerging as marketing's power players.

By Jason Proctor January 30, 2019
The names of youth are protected by publication ban, so the consequences of bad childhood decisions don't follow them for the rest of their lives. The bans work for media, but the teenage grapevine - Instagram, Snapchat and old-fashioned text message - is clearly another matter.

Education Technology
By Jamie Manolev, Anna Sullivan & Roger Slee December 14, 2018
ClassDojo is one of the most popular and successful educational technologies and is used internationally. It is a school-based social media platform that incorporates a gamified behaviour-shaping function, providing school communities with a centralised digital network in which to interact. We argue that ClassDojo's datafying system of school discipline intensifies and normalises the surveillance of students. Furthermore, it creates a culture of performativity and serves as a mechanism for behaviour control.

North Bay Innovation, has its own software platform, five dedicated teachers and an independent study class called Personalized Learning Time or PLT.

By S. Craig Watkins February 5, 2019
In the economy of tomorrow, the ability to use creative, critical and problem-solving skills will be just as important as the ability to use technology.

By Michelle Ross January 29, 2019
At the beginning of August, McPherson schools adopted the Summit Learning Platform where students are self-taught through online lessons at their own pace.  And so far, opinions have been mixed.

Social Media, Internet & Mobile Technology

Childreen and teens are very creative about find ways to continue on Social Media during homework. To help stop these workarounds, Screenagers have outlined what popular apps and games work on which devices.

By Tony Gonzalez November 7, 2015
Maplewood High, an inner-city Nashville high school, is taking part in a popular challenge: disconnecting from technology, or taking a "digital cleanse."

Families Managing Media presents a list of 10 myths that science says you no longer need to believe about screens and kids.

CBC Fifth Estate January 27 , 2019
The Fifth Estate spent months infiltrating incel forums to get a sense of what goes on in these dark corners of the internet.

By Paul Nuki February 9, 2019
It is only when legislation is enacted that platforms like Instagram and Facebook will - quite literally - start to clean up their act, systematically stripping their platforms of the illegal and offensive content that is causing so much division and harm.

By Laura Donnelly 
Children are spending an average of 23 hours a week on smartphones and other gadgets - twice as much time as they spend conversing with their parents, polling suggests.
They described wanting to become "better self-harmers" and match horrific injuries they saw on Tumblr, one of the sites they chose because posts receive little scrutiny.

The change appears to be in response to accusations that the platform was partly responsible for the death of Molly Russell, a 14-year-old girl who died by  suicide  in 2017.

By Nicholas Bakalar February 5, 2019
Using screens in a dark room was associated with worse sleep outcomes than using them with the lights on.

By Palko Karasz February 7, 2019
Britain's chief medical officers said that an association had been observed between the use of social media and mental health problems, but that "cause and effect are not yet fully understood."

By Laura Donnelly February 7, 2019
Prof Dame Sally Davies, UK Chief Medical Officer issued the first official advice on screen time and social media - urging parents to ban smartphones from mealtimes and leave them outside of bedrooms at night.

By John Constine January 29, 2019
Facebook admitts it was running the Research program to gather data on usage habits.

By Jenny Anderson January 29, 2019
The Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood (CCFC), Common Sense Media, and and 12 other advocacy groups say that the social media giant disregarded children's interests.

By Cat Zakrzewski January 10, 2019
new study on social media use found that people who spent excessive time on Facebook also made riskier decisions -- performing as poorly in a famous psychological test as people dependent on substances such as cocaine or heroin. 

BBC Video published January 10, 2019
Stephanie Hegarty meets the young people whose lives are built around likes, but are increasingly suffering from mental health problems and burn out.

By Daniyal Malik February 3, 2019
According to a recent study which was conducted with 2,000 parents having at least one child aged between 11 and 16, it has been proved that social media influencer and YouTuber stood second (17 per cent) and third (14 per cent) in the list of most popular professions that children wish to pursue for their careers. Doctors topped the list with 18 per cent.

CNBC February 1, 2019
Worried about the amount of time your child is spending on a tablet or phone? A professor says you shouldn't be screening screen time. Jordan Shapiro writes in his new book the time spent online in games and on social media is actually beneficial to kids.

Video Games & Pornography

By Carly Hoilman February 13, 2018
Porn is a topic that no parent wants to discuss with their child. But with the proliferation of social media usage among even elementary school children, now is not a time for blissful ignorance.

YouTube Video by Storyhive January 14, 2019
The World Health Organization recently declared video game addiction as a mental health disorder. Cam Adair shares his personal story of life-changing addiction and the efforts to better understand and provide help for this issue.

Child & Youth Addictions

By Gabriella Borter January 27, 2019
Danny Reagan, is helped at the Lindner Center of Hope's "Reboot" program, which admits only children who suffer from compulsion or obsession with their use of technology, in Mason, Ohio, U.S.,

Wireless Radiation

Published on line January 29, 2019 EMFSA
The concern is that continued exposure can cause serious harm to the health of the child, being exposed to an electromagnetic soup at school. The protection of the health of a  the child is a constitutional right.

By Katie Singer January 26, 2019
Our Web of Inconvenient Truths.

Zone'in Programs

Sedentary, neglected, isolated, and overstimulated, the new millennium child can no longer pay attention and learn. Zone'in Programs are designed by an occupational therapist to enhance child development and learning, ensuring successful futures.

Tech Talks for Therapists   - 5 hour training for educators and therapists; includes Tech Tool Kit.
Tech Talks for Families 10 half hour sessions for families on tech management; includes Tech Tool Kit.
Zone'in - enhancing attention, learning and self-regulation.
Move'in - teaches children to print, the foundation for literacy.
Unplug'in  - builds skill and confidence in activities other than technology.

Virtual Child - The terrifying truth about what technology is doing to children
Virtual Child
By Cris Rowan, pediatric occupational therapist.
Virtual Child  documents the impact technology has had on the developing child, and proposes tools and techniques to manage balance between activities children need for growth and success with technology use.  

Need more info? Visit


About the Author
Cris Rowan is a pediatric occupational therapist committed to enhancing child health and academic performance. Well known activist, speaker, sensory specialist and author, Cris is the "Go To" expert on child learning, development and technology overuse. Cris has provided over 200 workshops for health and education professionals, and is currently developing the Creating Sustainable Futures Program for a First Nations Community.
Training & Consultation

Instructor training for Foundation Series Workshops places pediatric occupational therapists on the cutting edge as experts in the field of technology's impact on child development.

Zone'in Training

Innovative team-based approach to manage balance between activities children need to grow and succeed with technology use.

Cris Rowan is now offering private phone/Skype consultations. 

Care to Donate?
Zone'in Programs Inc. and Cris Rowan are seeking your support and assistance to ensure sustainable and productive futures for our children. Find out more about how you can help us!
Contact Us
6840 Seaview Rd. Sechelt BC V0N3A4 
Tel: 1-888-896-6346
Fax: 1-877-896-6346
© Zone'in Programs Inc. 2019