Reasons Why Handheld Devices Should Be Banned or at Least Monitored More Closely

From the Blog of Chris Rowan a Pediatric Occupational Therapist:

Very interesting read... The effect of devices on children's brains are not really well documented at this point but there are some very interesting points being made by several neuroscientists, doctors and educators.  Maybe it is time to sit up and listen to what is being said.  

The American Academy of Pediatrics and the Canadian Society of Pediatrics state infants aged 0-2 years should not have any exposure to technology, 3-5 years be restricted to one hour per day, and 6-18 years restricted to 2 hours per day (AAP 2001/13, CPS 2010). Children and youth use 4-5 times the recommended amount of technology, with serious and often life threatening consequences (Kaiser Foundation 2010, Active Healthy Kids Canada 2012). Handheld devices (cell phones, tablets, electronic games) have dramatically increased the accessibility and usage of technology, especially by very young children (Common Sense Media, 2013). As a pediatri…

Compliance Strategies

One of the issues teachers regularly discuss are students who are non-compliant in the classroom.  These students have a tremendous impact on classroom dynamics and outcomes for other students and can be frustrating for all the people involved.  So what do we do?  The biggest impact that teachers can have with students who are non-compliant typically occur when a relationship has been developed between the teacher and the student.  This however can take many months if not years to develop.  Here are a few tips from Vanderbilt University to apply to your classroom management policies:

Tip Sheet: Compliance Strategies
Rationale The use of positive behavior supports (PBS) is mandated by federal law (IDEA, 2004). Within PBS, there are three tiers of support with corresponding goals and activities: (Lewis & Sugai, 1999) oTier 1 - Prevent academic and behavior problems: school wide academic & behavior interventions; oTier 2 - Prevent the development of more serious problems and improve …

Teacher Stress

It has been said that teaching is one of the most stressful jobs on earth.  It is due in part to the fact that teachers must interact in a positive way during the entire school day even if they aren't emotionally up to it.  Other professions typically have down time where they can re-group or just get away from people for awhile but teachers are "on" from the minute they walk into the school to the minute they leave.  This is with both peers and students.  Some people are quick to say that teachers shouldn't be stressed because they have all these holidays and work only from 8-3.  Until you have been in the classroom for a year, you really have no right to make a comment.  Try it.... see how you like it.

Being negative with our teachers is definitely not helpful.  If you are a parent of a child in school, remember the teacher is there to help your child succeed.  Your child may require a united front with the teacher not an aggressive approach with you against the te…

Discipline vs. Punishment

In my seminar, Save Your Sanity:  Proactive Strategies for Children with Challenging Behaviour, we discuss the difference between punishment and discipline.  We have to realize that these two words are actually belief systems or philosophies.  You as a parent or teacher have to define what this means to you and be very clear on your approach.  WHY?? Your belief system guides your behaviour and the approach that you use with children is defined by what you believe.  Why do you do the things you are doing with the children you work with or parent?  In order to answer that clearly you have to become aware of your own behaviour in relation to a child's behaviour.  Are you trying to fix or change a child or are you trying to teach?  The clearer you are on your belief system and behaviour, the less confusion a child experiences in their environment.