September 18, 2007

A major British think-tank has released an important report indicating that an increasing number of children are being raised, in effect, by electronic screens. The report warns of “screen kids” being raised by “electronic babysitters.”

Before you dismiss this as exaggeration, consider the fact that millions of children, many under 10 years of age, now have televisions and other electronic devices in their bedrooms.

Millions of children and adolescents spend very little time with family members. Instead, they isolate themselves in their bedrooms with their televisions, laptops, iPods and all the rest.

The British report also found that many families no longer share a family meal because members of the family are isolated with their own screens and cannot pull themselves away even to share a meal.

This report should get the attention of American parents as well. There is something deeply wrong with a culture that would allow its children and teenagers to spend more time with screens than with family.

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