In today’s society, technology reigns supreme in the minds of children. One only has to turn on a computer, and instantly one is connected to individual who are thousands of miles away. In addition, technology allows for the transmission of information and provides a number of other much needed information. No one is immune to technology. Many individuals admire and respect the use of technology in the society as it is beneficial. Without the advances in technology over the years, the world would not be as productive as it is at the moment. Nevertheless, with all the positive impact of technology, there are a number of negative issues surrounding technology. In a CNN special, Chelsea Clinton and James P. Steyer look at the ever-evolving theories about the way the social media shapes the communication process, (Clinton & Steyer, 2012, par.1). Children tend to look for easier ways to become entertained. The Internet offers this means of entertainment to children. However, this “entertainment” has negative repercussions on children who cannot distinguish between acceptable and unacceptable use of technology. While modern technology offers much positive opportunities for individuals, it also influences negative behaviors in children.
In a world where one only needs to press a button to complete a task, children have become lazy and irresponsible. The advent of the Internet brought with it ease of access as it surpassed the expectations of many individuals. At present, much of the information that individuals post on the web are opinions, but these opinions lure children into a false sense of security. Cinton and Steyer write “the impact of heavy media and technology use on kids' social, emotional and cognitive development [shows that] the emergent results are serious,” (Clinton and Steyer, 2012, par.5). Emerging research indicates that the Internet changes the way the brain works as increased multimedia content and hypertext causes poor focus, increased risk in depression and limited attention span, (Clinton & Steyer, 2012, par 5). Arguably, technology does not harm children. Instead, it is the unsound judgment that encourages the adaption of the negative aspects of technology that harms individuals.
The new world of multitasking and digital immersion has an impact on the work routines and the thinking processes and impact linear thinking. Clinton and Steyer point out that the world of technology impacts the way individuals feel about self, friends and even stranger, (Clinton & Steyer, 2014, par.7) In addition, the digital media allows individuals to share private and personal information without thinking of the negative repercussions which lasts for a lifetime. Nevertheless, Jones indicates that these negative repercussions of technology can be fixed by giving children “toys” that offer physical enjoyment and foster positive bonding with parents.
In the past, children receive simply toys on special occasions, but the explosive expansion of smart-phones, the social media, and digital devices continue to transform the lives of children. Even the smallest child is technologically savvy and can use electronic gadgets to download apps. Clinton and Steyer note Consumer Reports in 2011 show that over seven million American children under the age of thirteen joined Facebook, (Clinton & Steyer, 2012, par.2). Arguably, the continued advancement in technology and the need to belong, place negative pressure on the average adolescents. No child wants to feel left out because of a lack of access to technological devices or gadgets. At the same time these children want to feel as though they can move forward with the changes in the society. However, these changes have negative consequences as these children fall victims to cyber-bullying and the need to establish a presence on the Internet with revealing posts.
The fact that computers are indispensable in the modern world of education and work, forces almost every educator and caregiver to want to implement computers in their homes and schools. Many adults believe that by providing children with hands on experience and familiarity with computers from an early age will promote productive adults, but many children lose vision of the true purpose of modern technology. Arguably, children see the Internet as a means of socializing with positive and negative people and this leads to an increase in cyber crime and physical crimes. Nonetheless, students in advanced, and even in some third world countries, now use computers in schools as a means of advancing technology. But, what happens to the traditional methods of having teachers impart knowledge in a structured and meaningful way? In the past, the conventional methods of teaching were good and the world produced great leaders from these conventional methods. The fact that computers make learning easier, does not make it a better teaching aid.
There is no doubt that individuals, and in particular children, have become lazy because they rely on computers and technology to do their work. If one were to ask the average child how to use the traditional library, there is no doubt that the child would not know. In fact, many students cannot appreciate the very idea of opening a book as they have been socialized to read via the internet. This method of learning cannot be appropriate as the value of book becomes an archaic factor and a distant memory. The implication is greater when one looks at the increase in computer stimulated programs that take away from the physical aspect of learning. Take for example the many computer generated programs that show a simulated version of dissecting a frog. These programs remove the hands-on experience that offers learners the thrill of learning. As such Rachel Jones suggests that giving more meaningful gifts, such as memberships to zoos, science museums, and children’s museums offers a challenge in learning, (Jones, 2014, par.3), represents a more meaningful link to the past, the present and the future.
In concluding, the arrival of computers and the Internet has changed the lives of individuals in general. Schools promote the use of technology in education in an effort to produce a technologically advanced future generation. However, many computer literate children can create posts in the social media, but are still semi-literate. How can this really help the society? Arguably, one does not need to spell correctly or know grammatically correct sentences to use the Internet. As a result, there is a growth on the dependence on computers and departure from the basic rules of the learning. Nonetheless, children find more pleasure in using technology for social purposes and not for educational purposes. In essence, technology offers a variety of positive and enriching moments, but there are a number of negative consequences to the increase use of technology in the younger generation.
Clinton, C., & Steyer., J. (1970, January 1). Is the internet hurting children?. CNN. Retrieved
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