Posts in Tech in Schools
Do you know the cell phone policy at your child's school?

When I visit schools across the country, I am consistently surprised that students, parents and even teachers are frequently unsure of the cell phone policies at their school. Wouldn't it be great if we had data on how often middle schools allow students to have cell phones with them all day? And wouldn’t it be great if we knew what policies parents want?

Read More
"13 Reasons Why" and how to talk to our teens about hard issues

Teens all over the world are streaming the Netflix series, “13 Reasons Why.” The series, based on the young adult novel by Jay Asher, explores hard issues like online bullying, rape, and suicide. Because youth today so often watch shows alone on their personal devices, it is imperative that we engage and have conversations with our teens about these intense subjects. 

Read More
Do your preteens or teen have cellphones in their bedrooms?

A major study  recently showed without question the negative effect cellphones have on the quantity and quality of children’s sleep. Why public health experts care is because things like accidents, obesity, mental health problems all go up with sleep deprivation – and grades go down.

Read More
How much are your kids going on their cellphone at school?

NBC's Today Show ran a piece this week where 10th grade students at a school in Tumwater, Washington watched Screenagers and then had the chance to do a one-week digital detox and be filmed for TV. Only some kids agreed to do it and the results were unexpected. Watch this with your kids! My kids thought it was really well done.

Read More
Cellphones at school, what are the rules?

Tech Talk Tuesday #32
What is a phone's role at school?

My daughter is in 9th grade in a junior high, and my son in the high school, and it seems every year they, and I, are not entirely clear on the rules at school around cellphones. Tessa tells me that one teacher has a zero tolerance policy. On the first day he told them that if he catches them with a phone, he will put it on his desk—In this first week, he has not confiscated one during her class.  Another “more chill” (in Tessa’s words) teacher says if you finish your work you can be on your phone. He added that there are “appropriate times to be on your phone and non-appropriate times.”  I’m eager to have a Tech Talk Tuesday tonight with my kids about how this is all working...the different rules, their desire to check their phones versus their need to pay attention, etc. 

Read More
Homework and screen time, what's the plan this year?

Tech Talk Tuesday #31
How do you balance homework and screentime?

Screen time and homework can be a real problem. Our children often need screens to do their homework and then are automatically vulnerable to distraction when they need concentration the most. Famous research out of Stanford showed that when people multitask they feel as if they are doing better and better at the different tasks but actually they are doing worse and worse on all of them. 

Read More
4 Tips for creating a screen-time contract for the new year

As summer break nears its final days and I see the fall frenzy of school-and-everything-else schedules coming my way, I am preparing for the transition.  Amidst considerations around supplies, extracurriculars, transportation, and meals is of course…managing screen time.

Read More
Creativity in our lives, on and off line

Tech Talk Tuesday #28
How do you use technology creatively?

When we screened Screenagers to employees at Pixar, the organizer Guido Quaroni, V.P. of Software R&D at Pixar (and also the voice Guido in Cars) and I talked about their recruitment efforts. He told me that the hardest people to find for Pixar were good story writers, animators, designers...  not programmers. The creatives, however, he said ... "Ahhh, man, that is hard."

Read More