BEACON TRANSCRIPT – Technology is dominating, and media takes away 9 hours of a teenager’s day through its high variety and incredible number of options available. It might not be a surprise for anyone that children are spending a lot of their time in front of screens. However, a new study estimated that this amounts to at least a quarter of their day.
Common Sense Media conducted a study on over 2,600 tweens (between 8 and 12 years old) and teens (between 13 to 18 years old). Their research centered around the time they waste in front of screens, be it TV, phones, tables, and different activities. Watching TV, playing games, or just using social media takes up more time than anything else.
This includes time spent in school, with their parents, or just the time they spend sleeping.
According to their findings, teenagers in the United States spend an average of 9 hours on media for the sake of their enjoyment. Tweens, on the other hand, spend an average of 6 hours per day for the same purpose. And reportedly, other important activities are not in the way.
Even if they’re doing their homework, 50% of teens either “often” or “sometimes” resort to social media or TV during academic activities. Schoolwork is also paused in favor of texting for 60% of them. Music also plays a part, with 75% of teenagers claiming they listen to music while doing their homework. Most of them do not believe that this affects the quality of their work.
According to James Steyer, founder of Common Sense Media, teenagers believe that it doesn’t affect their ability to conduct their work efficiently, but it does. Studies have shown that it affects their cognitive control or their abilities to properly process the information. Media tends to take over their attention, especially due to its entertaining qualities.
The researchers also found differences where gender is concerned. While 62% of teenage boys claim that they play games “a lot”, only 20% of teenage girls stated the same. Instead, young women tend to favor social media. According to their reports, 44% of girls claimed that they enjoy spending time on social networks “a lot”, while only 29% of boys stated the same.
Music, however, seems to be a popular choice for both genders, with relatively close results, 37% for girls, and 22% for boys.
Smartphones, along with media and technology are taking over, though the study did not emphasize if this is good or bad. According to Steyer, “media and technology are here to stay”, and it will definitely influence the way children grow up and develop into young adults.
Image source: thesundaytimes.co.uk