By Cris Rowan

Video games are a ubiquitous form of entertainment in today's children and youth, and while fun and exciting, have a darker side that parents, teachers and health professionals can no longer ignore. While many adults struggle with gaming addiction, parents don't seem to consider gaming's addictive nature when allowing young children to game. When evaluating impact of video games on children, 3 parameters are important to consider: duration, content, and age of first exposure. Children who start gaming later in childhood, and who stay under the expert guidelines for duration and content, will likely demonstrate less negative effects from gaming. Whereas children who start gaming young in life, play video games for long periods, and who play predominantly Mature content with sexual and physical violence, will likely exhibit a greater number of below noted negative effects. Children who experience 3 or more of the following conditions have significant negative effects from playing video games, and should work with their parents, physician and/or therapist to improve access to healthy activities and stop using video games if under the age of 12 years. Teens who are older than 12 years of age and demonstrate more than 3 of the following conditions, would benefit from increasing access to healthy activities and subsequently reduce game duration, change to non-violent game content, and possibly consider quitting gaming altogether until 18 years of age.


5G Space Appeal - signatures needed

An  International Appeal to Stop 5G on Earth and in Space,  together with the list of signatories, will be formally presented to the United Nations, World Health Organization, European Union, and world governments on or before December 1, 2018.

If you are a scientist, doctor, health professional, building biologist, or other professional or consultant, or if you represent an environmental organization, please sign the Appeal.

With your help, stopping 5G is possible.
Information about signing the Appeal can be found here.  

YouTube Video Published October 9, 2018
30 min. video of Dr. Erica Mallery-Blythe, Founder of Physicians' Health Initiative for Radiation and Environment and Trustee Radiation Research Trust speaking at Oct. 9, 2018 UK Childhood Cancer Conference on wireless radiation and childhood disease.

Foundation Series Workshop Schedule

November 3 and 4, 2018 - Lahore, Pakistan
Presentation and panel discussions on the impact of technology on child development at the annual  School of Tomorrow  conference titled "A World of Tomorrow Reimagined" sponsored by the Beaconhouse School System.
Contact person:  Dr. Lawrence Burke,  lawrence.burke@beaconhouse.net

November 15 and 17, 2018 - Maple Ridge, BC
Workshops for early childhood educators and health professionals on impact of technology on children sponsored by Ridge Meadows Early Child Development Committee.
Contact person: Roberta O'Brien, 604-467-6055,  rmecd@telus.net

March 1, 2019 - Winnipeg, MB
Workshop for parents and professionals on impact of technology on children sponsored by Alloway Therapy.
Contact person: Patti Sutherland,   patti@allowaytherapy.com, 204-296-3338

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, Johanna.larson@sd52.bc.ca

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, Johanna.larson@sd52.bc.ca

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. www.camp-unplugged.com.
Contact person: Christie Walsh camps@palomar.camp,(858) 225-8535 

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.

Children's Screen Time Action Network Webinar
Monday, November 5, 2018 7:30 PM EST
In this webinar Dr. Nancy Carlsson-Paige will offer a full exploration of how and why screens interfere with developmental milestones crucial to children's well-being. Presentation will be recorded and available on the  Action Network website  after the event.

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Research and News Review
 
Childhood Development

By Learning.com
Education is the best defense. Download your free toolkit today and get started on a cyberbullying prevention plan for your students. 

By Jackie Mader October 10, 2018
Especially popular in rural areas, preschool programs may expose kids to 'new risks,' experts warn.

By Bernice Hillier September 26
The family of an 8-year-old girl says she was sexually assaulted twice on a school bus.

By Nicholas Bakalar
By N. U. Yurika, Y. Hiroyuki, S Hiroki, et al August 2018 doi: 10.2152/jmi.65.280.
Study of a boy exposed to the media during his early development who was diagnosed with attachment disorder. His symptoms improved dramatically after he was prevented from using all media and encouraged to play in other ways.

American Academy of Pediatrics May 4, 2017
Research presented at in 2017 suggested the more time children under 2 years old spend playing with smartphones, tablets and other handheld screens, the more likely they are to begin talking later.

By Laura Donnelly October 9, 2018
It comes amid concern about an epidemic of anxiety and distress among young people, with record levels of mental ill-health among a generation dealing with the fallout from social media.

By Laura Donnelly October 17, 2018
Young children spending at least half an hour a day of leisure time online were twice as likely to spend their pocket money on such foods, compared with those whose time on websites was more restricted, the study found.

By Environmental Health Trust (EHT) May 2018
The CDC presented new findings of increasing rates of brain cancer, renal cancer, hepatic (liver) cancer, and thyroid cancer among individuals under 20 years old in the USA after analyzing 2001-2014 US National Cancer statistics tumor data from 48 states (covering 98% of the US population).

By Melanie Palmer September 11, 2018
A Barnesville man wants to turn back the clock. He says, his son is addicted to electronics and he wants his son to do his homework, on paper. But he claims, the school isn't making it easy.

By Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood uploaded October 23, 2017
"The Parent Toolkit for Student Privacy" is a 46-page resource designed to help parents protect their children's sensitive school data. 

Social Media, Internet & Mobile Technology

Apple's latest operating system, iOS 12's new Screen Time , is the feature parents have been waiting for. With it, we have a new tool to help prevent excessive screen time for our youth, as well as ourselves. 

By Dennis Powell September 22, 2018
Op Ed suggesting Americans find themselves in a culture being shaped in echo chambers, stunted by closed-mindedness and unwilling to learn from each other.

Generation Z students, classified as being between the ages of 14 and 23, believe that YouTube is a bigger contributor to their education than textbooks, according to a study by Pearson Education.

By Judith Shulevitz  November 2018 Issue
The voice revolution has only just begun. Today, Alexa is a humble servant. Very soon, she could be much more-a teacher, a therapist, a confidant, an informant.

By Ray A. Smith October 6, 2018
Targeted ads aren't the only thing you have to worry about on social media. Now, a number of companies are making contracts with kids as young as 4 to promote their products on Instagram.

By Maryse Zeidler October 7, 2018
'Not only did they enjoy the experience less, but they also found the experience to be more boring'

Sent August 8, 2018
Most Canadians say it's easier to stay indoors, despite knowing nature is good for them.

By Charles Hymas September 17, 2018
So cial media firms face fines of up to £18m if they disturb children with notifications and alerts at night or during the school day under plans being considered by the information commissioner.

By Paige Gross September 26, 2018
24 men arrested in New Jersey were using a social media app, a messaging website, or  even the chat feature of a video game  to reach out to the detectives who were posing as teens .
Highlights of the speakers speeches at Screen Time Colorado.

By Erika Christakis July/August 2018
When it comes to children's development, parents should worry less about kids' screen time-and more about their own.

By American Heart Association News August 6, 2018
American Heart Association urges caution regarding screen overuse in children.

By Jacqueline Howard July 29, 2016
Adults spend 10 hrs 39 min per day on entertainment media. This is separate from work media.

By Jenny Anderson & Jill Petzinger 

Video Games & Pornography

By Curtis Withers October 3, 2018
Like millions of households around the world, NHL teams are trying to figure out how to handle the distraction presented by video game, "Fortnite".

By CBC News August 31, 2018
Charges have been laid against five boys accused of exchanging sexually explicit photos of fellow students at Séminaire des Pères Maristes, a Quebec City private school

By Brian S. McGarth September 14, 2018
Too much video gaming could be bad for your kids mental health.

By Mark Keenan September 7, 2018 
Fortnite is one of the most addictive digital games ever played.  It's not only teenagers that are being affected by its drug like qualities.  It is affecting relationships and marriages according to research by online divorce website  www.divorce-online.co.uk .

By Helen Pozniak Sepetmber 27, 2018
Hiding the gaming remotes are in the fridge behind the vegetables. Yesterday they were in the bathroom cupboard. This is to exert some semblance of control over our children's gaming.

By Allison Horn October 12, 2018
Heitmann was known as McSkillet in the video game community and had a successful YouTube channel.

By Charles Hymas September 30, 2018
Rob Jones said the firms had the technology to be more proactive to prevent images reaching the web in the first place to stop crime happening and to hunt down paedophiles grooming children.

By Nora D. Volkow, Ruben D. Baler, Wilson M. Compton and Susan R.B. Weiss June 5, 2014
This is important, useful information, as so many gamers and Internet addicts are increasingly using marijuana. 

Child & Youth Addictions

If your child is getting too much screen time, it may be affecting their development - but there are ways to keep it in check.

Simon Stevens said the Government should consider introducing a "mental health levy" to fund NHS treatment of problems fuelled by such websites.

To better understand the growing internet addiction, "Compare the Market" has performed analysis to identify the availability of WiFi spots and internet access among hundreds of countries.

An interview with John, a technology addict in recovery.

Study to translate and validate the Test of Mobile Dependence (TMD), and to investigate if there are any associations between mobile phone use and problem gambling

By Tina Mulqueen September 25, 2018
Singling out social media isn't the answer. Technology is addictive and we all need to step up and do something about it.

By Victor Tangermann September 12, 2018
For now, online peer support groups like Game Quitters, plus a smattering of therapists well-versed in the topic, try to do their best to support those for whom obsession has morphed into addiction.

By Michael Liedtke October 18, 2018
Is technology messing with children's brains, even as it enlightens and empowers them in ways that weren't possible when his generation grew up?

Wireless Radiation

By The Baby Safe Project
Five Easy Ways to Reduce Exposure.

By Environmental Health Trust
Virtual reality information slides with manufacturers warnings.

YouTube Video Published August 30, 2018
Introduction to the presentations from the Health in Buildings Roundtable Conference held at the NIH this summer. All talks are less than 10 minutes for easy sharing.

Children's Screen Time Action Network - Newsletter


Washington Post
Reasons to read:  As we know, it can be difficult to distinguish fact from fiction when it comes to political content on social media. With kids getting so much of their news online, this guide provides some starting points for helping kids navigate the muddle of attack ads, mudslinging, and fake news.  

Stronger Data-Privacy Protections for Students and Teachers Needed, Report Argues
Education Week
Reasons to read:  PCSP and the Badass Teachers Association (BATs) released a comprehensive toolkit for educators to navigate the complexities of protecting school-related data in the era of ed tech. A great read for educators and parents alike. Find ithere!

Kids make Big Tech tremble
Politico EU
Reasons to read:  At the recent UK Conservative Party summit, there was plenty of discussion on screen time and protecting kids from Big Tech. Stay tuned: social media giants might have more to worry about across the pond. 

Time spent by children online linked to requests for junk food
University of Liverpool
Reasons to read:  Scientists in the UK are recommending limits on junk food advertising to kids after a study from the University of Liverpool and Cancer Research UK's Cancer Policy Research Centre found that kids who spent more than 30 minutes a day online were nearly twice as likely to ask their parents for junk food.

Give the Screens a Rest
National Recreation and Park Association
Reasons to read:  CCFC's Rinny Yourman wrote a guest blog for NRPA on Screen-Free Week, our annual event encouraging kids and families to unplug and have fun offline. It's never too early to start planning your next Screen-Free Week!

Raised by YouTube
The Atlantic
Reasons to read: A fascinating look at kids' content on YouTube, its creators, and why we should design children's entertainment with kids in mind, not algorithms or clicks.  

Child experts file FTC complaint against Facebook kids' app
Associated Press
Reasons to read: This past Wednesday, CCFC and 17 other advocacy groups filed an FTC complaint which maintains that Facebook is breaking the law with its controversial Messenger Kids app. 

Study links restricting screen time for kids to higher mental performance
Washington Post
Reasons to read: Research continues to back up what many parents, caregivers, and educators already know: kids need plenty of time away from screens to truly thrive. 

Kids as young as 7 are finding ingenious ways around Apple's screen time controls
Business Insider
Reasons to read: Although Apple is trying to help parents control their children's screen time, it's clear that they'll have to do more. Read on to marvel at kids' innovative prowess, then lament that it's being used to unlock tablets. 

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.
Live'in - media literacy guide for home, school and community.


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  www.virtualchild.ca

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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
 
Training

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


Consultation
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. 

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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!
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