The very young increasingly going digital


Children’s media watchdog Common Sense notes that US citizens in the 2-4 and 5-8 demographics are increasingly using smartphones, video iPods, iPads and other similar devices. However, television remains the dominant media activity.

The stats come from a newly released Common Sense study called “Zero to Eight: Children’s Media Use in America.”

The study finds that about 40% of 2-4 year-olds use digital devices, as do 52% of the 5-8 bracket. Meanwhile, 42% of respondents reported bedroom television sets for the under-8 age bracket.

Common Sense reported, “Despite the proliferation of new technologies and platforms, television continues to dominate children’s media use. Among all 0- to 8-year-olds, an average of 1:40 is spent watching television or DVDs in a typical day, compared to 29 minutes reading or being read to, 29 minutes listening to music, 17 minutes using a computer, 14 minutes using a console or handheld video game player, and 5 minutes using a cell phone, video iPod, iPad, or similar device.”

James Steyer, CEO of Common Sense, stated,  “Much of the focus in recent years has been on the explosion of media use among teenagers, whereas our study examines media use among young children during crucial developmental years. Last week, the American Academy of Pediatrics reaffirmed their position that children under age 2 should not engage in any screen time, yet the data shows infants and toddlers are growing up surrounded by screens. This use data is an important first step toward understanding how the prevalence of media and technology affects the development of our youngest kids.”

RBR-TVBR observation: Our children are now 12 and 14. They’re allowed to use computers and other devices and watch TV. However, they do not have computers or TVs in their bedrooms. Regular reading is required. And they both get excellent grades. Related? Who knows? We’re just sayin’…