Parents, Look at Your Kid, Not Your Smartphone
Pediatrician pleads for parents to put down their phones
By John Johnson, Newser Staff
Posted Aug 9, 2014 10:35 AM CDT
   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – A pediatrician's plea in the Washington Post for parents to put down their smartphones and make actual human contact with their kids might be worth it for the opening anecdote alone. Jane Scott explains that a dad brought his 2-year-old boy into her office, each absorbed in his own phone. When Scott explained to the boy that he had an ear infection but that medicine could fix him up, he took in the news, picked up his phone, and asked, "Siri, what is an ear infection?" That he turned to Siri instead of his dad got Scott thinking not just about how much time kids spend on their phones, but what kind of example their parents are setting.

"This might seem absurd to today’s parents, who feel like they give themselves to their children in ways previous generations never imagined," she writes. "But the undivided attention that children need from us is in jeopardy." Scott cites troubling studies about distracted caregivers—who often don't realize they're distracted—along with first-hand evidence she sees in her exam rooms of kids raised by parents who are present in body but not mind. "In an era of constant distraction, we must decide what’s more important: heeding the constant ping of our devices, or telling our children, in word and deed, 'I am listening. I am here. And there’s nowhere else I’d rather be.'" Click for her full column.

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Showing 3 of 31 comments
Ga Go
Jun 27, 2015 6:36 PM CDT
Finding a Vast Spectrum of Smart Phones & Products housed under 1 entity is made posibble by your New Online Gateway Store @ http://smartphones411.com and Yes i agree that young kids doesn't need to have a mobile.
Toon
Aug 13, 2014 8:49 AM CDT
I do have a cell phone, rarely carry it, rarely turn it on. I still I am often distracted. I think parents in the past were much the same, attention wise. Think about the stories of kids roaming neighborhoods til suppertime or sundown. I think the technology would not be a problem if limits were set, certain times and places designated as tech-free. Technology brings lots of good things but think of it as carrots. Carrots are good for kids but if you fed them nothing but carrots you would poison them. Everything in moderation is a really good rule of thumb.
Ezekiel 25:17
Aug 9, 2014 6:55 PM CDT
Our family drives into the Grand Teton National Park in the late 70's in our VW bus. I do have some technology in a CB radio giving dad smokey reports. We take in all of the unique roadside oddities like balls of twine, cement dinosaurs, concrete teepees, unique bridges, etc. We get to camp and set up. The rules were to be back before supper. So we did our side excursions as kids and made a b-line back. A few years later dad got me a 12v portable tv. I would then try to tune in stations as we travelled. It helped with weather info. Then when I got a ham license, i would hit local repeaters and talk until we got out of range. Now lets fast forward to a couple years ago. Similar family in a television ad approaches the Grand Tetons in a Lincoln Navigator. There were 5 LCD screens. Some are connected to a dvd player while others tuned in Disney mobile tv. Great view outside, kids inside watching a movie. I'm sure if the commercial ran 30 minutes we would have seen the Lincoln pull up to a lodge where they kids ran in to get to their room and tune the TV on their favorite channels. Meanwhile outside that room was a vista view of the Tetons. Maybe tetons if they had a pool. ;-0