Data were gathered through a survey of 2,326 parents whose children were eight years old and younger. The surveys were conducted in English and Spanish. Check out page nine of the report for more information on the methodology of the research project.
Most Interesting Report Findings (more are available in the report)
A large number of the parents in the survey do not believe that increased use of media has made parenting easier.
Most parents in the survey did not report many or significant family conflicts around media use.
There continues to be a big gap between those who can afford new digital devices and those who cannot afford them.
The study identified three types of parenting styles when it comes to family media use.
Media-centric family life centers around various types of screens, and parents as well as children enjoy using media a lot of the time.
Media moderate family life includes less media access, and the television is turned off a lot more of the time. Video games are not as important to daily life as in a media-centric family.
Media lite family life includes screen time but less than the other two parenting styles. They tend to do to less television watching as a family, and they do not use television to distract children so that parents can accomplish other tasks.
Over the past 10 days I have attended multiple, jam-packed professional development events. I’m beginning to think of it in reality show lingo as my extreme professional development experience, because I’ve encountered so many colleagues along with ideas, hands-on strategies, learning theories, and thoughtful approaches, all focused on becoming better teachers, collaborators, and learners in the 21st Century. One over-arching idea applies to all of my activities: learning, unlearning, and relearning are now routine. Anyone not comfortable with these three concepts — connected and in tandem — needs to get acquainted with them ASAP.
I’m reminded of a quote from futurist Alvin Toffler, “The illiterate of the future are not those that cannot read or write. They are those that can not learn, unlearn, and relearn.“
My extreme adventure started about 10 days ago when I presented in the Virginia Shenandoah Valley at the Virginia Association of Press Women. I described how technology has transformed the way we all learn and how specific content is now less important than our skill at discovering information, evaluating it, and using it well. The digital content is out there for everyone to find, I told the group. The role of adults and teachers is to ensure that as we teach one area of content we also ensure that children are developing the skills to recognize, evaluate, and use quality information.
I drove home on Saturday and left again on Sunday for the annual AIMS Technology Retreat on the Maryland Eastern Shore.
As an educational technology faculty member attending the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) conference, I enjoy the opportunity to meet with lots of colleagues and friends. More interestingly, at these events I always come face-to-face, for the first time, with a number of people with whom I’ve previously connected via personal learning networks, LinkedIn, Twitter, blogs, and even via old-fashioned listservs.
While it’s always a joy to meet and greet these people, I am always aware that dozens more connected friends and colleagues are probably attending any given conference — I just haven’t met them yet. Today, in fact, I sat down at a table to eat lunch, looked at the woman across the table, noticed how familiar she looked, and realized that she and I are Twitter followers.
It wasn’t always like this! More than 20 years ago, when I received my first email account, I desperately wanted to meet other teachers who were online.