What happens when our kid's only childhood memory is a screen?
By Cris Rowan

One of our jobs as parents is to create childhood memories that will sustain them through their lifetime; memories that will be told around the camp fire, at weddings, and even at funerals. Memories so beautiful and heart felt they make us smile, laugh, and cry. 

Cat Stevens- Where do the children play
Cat Stevens- Where do the children play

Lyrics from a Cat Stevens song illustrate real concerns regarding preserving childhood and play spaces "We've come a long way, we're changing day to day, but tell me where do the children play?" In the rush to digitalize childhood, society seems to have forgotten critical essential components needed to create a sustainable child. Play spaces where children can run, yell, and be free to imagine other worlds are rapidly deteriorating without so much as a backward glance. Tall swings, long slides and merry-go-rounds were standard equipment in playgrounds of the past, and Toys "R" Us was a birthday and Christmas must. Children use to "play out" until dark and get into adventurous mischief because parents weren't monitoring their every move. Students either biked or walked to school and participated in a vast diversity of after school sports and club activities. Recesses were long and PE teachers ensured they were packed with loads of gym, playground and game-type activities. Children seemed happy...only a 20 years ago, they seemed secure, well adjusted, and on their way to becoming independent adults with bright futures, and - happy memories to sustain them through the tough times. Fast forward to today. Toys "R" Us went belly up after 70 years of providing kids with thrilling toys. Playgrounds are infantile and dilapidated with licencing forced removal of everything fun or challenging. Streets and parks are quiet and deserted. As epidemic levels of obesity climb, kids are dropped off at school where No Child Left Behind initiatives have eliminated PE and decimated recess. When students are allowed recess, they spend their time on mandated BYOD screens...sedentary, inside, alone, and sad. With the onset of video games and social media has come pervasive and escalating child behavior management issues including aggression, depression, anxiety and suicide. As outdoor rough and tumble imaginative play rapidly becomes a thing of the past, society might be wise to consider the following nature and movement-based initiatives to enhance child development, behavior and learning. 

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

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

October 26, 2019 - Courtney BC
Workshop for early intervention providers on balancing screens with healthy activities sponsored by Vancouver Island Center for Child Resource and Referral.
Contact person:  Catherine Carter Clark; (250) 746-4136,  ccarterclark@clementscentre.org

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, aaguirre@clinicauandes.cl

Other Workshops & Webinars

Families Managing Media 2019
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.

Electromagnetic Fields Conference 2019 - Diagnosis and Treatment: Effects of Electromagnetic Fields Exposure. The Impact of Today's Wireless Technology

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Research and News Review
Childhood Development

By Marcy Cuttler May 10, 2019
Students who spend time outside are less stressed and have longer attention spans, educators find.

By Susan Scutti May,16 2019
The blue light in LED lighting that is increasingly used in our homes can damage the eye's retina while disturbing our biological and sleep rhythms, a  French health authority  warned in a new report.

Education Technology
By Amadou Diallo April 22, 2019
In Silicon Valley, cash-strapped schools are selling bonds to buy student laptops.

By Benjamin Herold April 24, 2019
Despite continued hype, K-12 educators remain sceptical that new technologies will transform public schooling or dramatically improve teaching and learning.

By Neal Buccino July 27, 2018
Rutgers University-New Brunswick conducts first-ever classroom experimental study connecting in-class cellphone use with lower test scores.

By Sally Ho April 29, 2019

By Lousi-Phillipe Beland and Richard Murphy May 2015 CEP Discussion Paper No 1350
By surveying schools in four English cities regarding their mobile phone policies and combining it with administrative data, this study finds that student performance in high stakes exams significantly increases post ban.

By Alan Singer April 25, 2019
A war on schools, teachers, and children threatens to create a Zombie nation in the United States. We need to "connect the dots" and fight back if we want to prevent this miseducation future.

By Catherine Talarico and Christina Chu March 2016
This 2016 paper, raises awareness regarding the serious consequences the overuse of classroom technology can have on our children's health and education.

Social Media, Internet & Mobile Technology

ScreenTime PART 4  Schools across the country crack down on student phone usage

ScreenTime PART 5 Not just humans - screen time has big effect on man's best friend

By Quentin Fottrell May 11 , 2019
Speaking to British Vogue, Madonna said she has imposed stricter smartphone rules for her younger children.  

By Craig Timberg and Rachel Siegel April 24, 2019
Experts in child development say the acquisition of language and social skills, typically by interacting with parents and others, are among the most important cognitive tasks of childhood.

By Jonathan A. Tran, Katherine S. Yang, Katie Davis, Alexis Hiniker May 2
Many smartphone users engage in compulsive and habitual phone checking they fnd frustrating, yet our understanding of how this phenomenon is experienced is limited. This study of  39 smartphone users (ages 14-64) probed their experiences with compulsive phone checking.

Video Games & Pornography

By Dr. Andrew & Julie Doan April 28, 2019
A Bible-based teaching on thoughts, behaviors, and problems with excessive use of entertainment digital media: streaming videos, smartphones, social media, video games, and pornography.

By Talia Ricci May 10, 2019
In 5 years, police have seen 1,100 cases, assisted nearly 300 victims in Toronto.

Child & Youth Addictions

Published in Michigan News December 1, 2017
A 2017 study found that how children use the devices, not how much time they spend on them, is the strongest predictor of emotional or social problems connected with screen addiction. This held true after researchers controlled for screen time.

By Reset Summer Camp  2019
Quiz designed especially for parents and caregivers like you who may not know if their child or teen is actually addicted to technology.

Wireless Radiation

This two-hour expert forum explains the biological effects on our children from wireless radiation in our schools. Link includes YouTube video, PowerPoint presentation and many supporting documents.

Children and Youth with Neuro-diverse Special Needs Committee needs your input

The public has been given an opportunity to speak before the British Columbia Select Committee on Children and Youth with Neuro-diverse  (e.g.: ASD, FASD, Developmental Delay) special needs and how the assessment and eligibility processes can be improved.   This opens up an opportunity for parents to express their concerns about the  biological effects of electromagnetic fields and the association  of the  neurological and psychological health effects children are experiencing in our classrooms.

Teachers are concerned that the classrooms are in a crisis, with verbal, physical, sometimes-violent outbursts in our Elementary School settings.    Suicide, anxiety, depression, self-harm, autism, ADHD, and other developmental delays are on the rise and seem to coincide with the installation of wireless technology in our schools. 

Please submit a letter or video to the Parliamentary Committee by June 7, 2019 confirming the growing evidence of neurological effects and developmental delays from wireless technology that can no longer be ignored. 

Special Project on Children and Youth with Neuro-diverse Special Needs

Written, audio, or video submissions submitted here.

Published Science

By Herbert, M.R. and Sage, C. Pathophysiology , 2013, Jun;20(3):191-209, Pubmed abstract for Part 1.

By Herbert, M.R. and Sage, C. Pathophysiology, 2013 Jun;20(3):211-34. Epub Pubmed abstract for Part II.

By Wen Y, Alshikho MJ, Herbert MR (2016) PLoS ONE 11(4): e0153329. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0153329

By Pall, Martin L. Journal of Chemical Neuroanatomy (2015).
By Pall, Martin L. Journal of cellular and molecular medicine 17.8 (2013): 958-965.
By Klinghardt, Dietrich, MD.  2008.
By Ahuja et al., International Journal of Medical and Medical Sciences Vol. 5(4), pp. 171-177, April (2013)

Complied by Dr. Hugh Taylor of Yale Medicine

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  www.zonein.ca/virtual-child/

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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

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
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Tel: 1-888-896-6346
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