Monday, April 18, 2016

Why We Don't Let Our Middle Schoolers Have Devices

For this week's Junior High Junction, I'm going to list the reasons my husband and I have decided against letting our middle school age children have devices - phone, iPads, tablets, and video games. This post is in no way meant to criticize those of you who do allow their children to have devices. Every family is different, and every family will make different decisions.

1.) Devices are a time-sucker. According to this website, kids ages 8-18 are spending an average of 44.5 hours weekly in front of screens. Granted, I'm sure this includes television, too; still, this is an incredible amount of wasted time our kids are spending in front of screens.

2.) Devices are addicting. Everywhere I go, I see people glued to their screens. In waiting rooms, at restaurants, at the grocery store, driving, at the's ridiculous. Most of these people are children and teens! I do not want my kids to be glued to their phones or tablets.

3.) Kids cannot communicate anymore. Texting has truly become the main form of communication between teens these days. Kids don't know how to interact with each other or with adults. I want my kids to be able to clearly communicate with all people.

4.) Devices have killed our teen's creativity. When our kids are bored, they don't pick up a book or head outside to shoot hoops anymore. They pick up their phones or tablets or play video games! They cannot think of better ways to entertain themselves. I want my kids to be creative and use their creativity to help change the world.

5.) Our teens are dependent on devices to find information. Don't get me wrong, devices can be a great tool. I use my phone quite a bit to find information for the kids. However, teens find dictionaries and encyclopedias to be obsolete! The majority of teens can't even use a real reference book without help. I want my kids to be able to utilize both - devices and real, live books.

6.) Devices can be dangerous. At least, the internet is dangerous, and kids are using devices to gain access to the internet. Between cyber bullying and pedophiles, I know I don't want my kids involved in any of it. It's not that I don't trust my kids; rather, I don't trust the internet! When my children do get on my computer for school-related things, they are always monitored by me and always sit in the kitchen.

Will we ever allow our kids to have devices? I'm not sure. Maybe when they get older, we will reevaluate our decision.

Do you allow you kids to use devices? Do you put time restrictions on their usage? I'd love to hear your thoughts in the comments!


  1. You are not alone here! We have a tablet, but it is only used under rare occasions, and only my 17 yo has a cell phone now that she leaves the house more often. I agree with you and plan to not use them with my children until we feel there is a real need. I love interacting with my girls :)

    1. I will probably get mine a phone when they start driving, but it won't be a smart phone!

  2. My kids have devices but I often wonder how and when that happened... they quickly snowball and I swear they secretly multiply! We do have time limits and they're often taken away for long periods of time so my kids can remember what it's like to be bored and entertain themselves. We're always struggling to find that balance between using technology and relying on technology.

  3. I will admit that there are days when I wish I could throw the devices out the window and other days where they are necessary and important when I am running behind and need to communicate with my middle or high schooler. I have strict rules for usage though, but the phones and Kindles still frustrate me. The children are so drawn to them and they can be a huge time sucker. I no longer allow my younger children to have their Kindles in their rooms because they are too tempted to play on them. I can't wait for the Securly review!

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