Can Children Get Addicted To Technology?
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Health and Wellness

I Am Scared For The Futures Of Our Technology-Dependent Children

When did the cyber world take over the real one?

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I Am Scared For The Futures Of Our Technology-Dependent Children

I remember as a child playing outside from the time that I woke up until it was time for dinner. I did everything outside; basketball with my brother in the driveway, catch with my dad in the yard, even reading and homework on the porch. Rainy days were my worst nightmare because it meant that I would be stuck inside. And while maybe I was just an overly active and outdoorsy kid, today's younger generation seems to lack any and all desire to be outside, and unfortunately, I think I know why.

Children of today are overly dependent on electronics and technology for all sources of entertainment. I hate being cliché with lines like, "When I was a kid…" or "Back in the day…" but I can't help it. As a nanny for three young boys, ages 7 (twins) and 13, I witness the impact that technology has had on the younger generations every day.

At my job, each morning begins with the children waking up and walking directly to their iPods, sometimes with their eyes still closed! It's as if they've been brainwashed into this routine that has become second nature to them. They refuse to speak to anyone and make sure to tune you out with wireless headphones that blast their YouTube videos, television shows, and games. They are completely invested in their devices and immersed in this bubble that seems to block out the real world.

Playing outside seems like a trend from the past. Children today would rather draw on an app on an iPad than use crayons and paper; they would rather text or FaceTime each other than interacting in person; and, they would much rather play FIFA on their Xbox than go outside and kick a soccer ball. But what has caused this need to be connected through wires, batteries, and electricity? Are we as a society enabling children in the midst of diabetes and obesity concerns?

Just look inside schools and you'll be surprised. The newest MacBooks are on every student's desk in the high school. Middle schoolers are given laptops in addition to iPads for their daily use in school. What happened to pen and paper, or is that now considered old-fashioned? Elementary level students go to the school library to play on computers rather than check out books.

I take the kids that I nanny to the Kids Academy at Lifetime Fitness and was shocked to see iPads in the kids' center the first time I went. I thought to myself, why would a gym that promotes healthy and active lifestyles encourage children to be stationary in front of a screen? I can't help but wonder is it because I wasn't exposed to any of this until I was older or is there seriously an issue?

Recently at work, my eyes were truly opened and my concern began. I took away one of the children's iPods as a punishment and in return, the boy told me "I wish you were dead," all because I took away his electronic device. At that moment, his attachment and dependency on technology fueled his emotional reaction and I was left speechless.

I hate to admit it, but sometimes it is easier to make children quiet by giving them your phone or putting the television on and distracting them; however, we need to find a balance between the cyber world and the real one.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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