I read a headline today that a school in Oregon is giving their third graders Ipod Touches and their fourth graders Ipads. Word has it that this will make kids produce better test scores. I can’t help but wonder if this is really true? http://www.macnews.com/2011/01/03/oregon-school-district-gives-ipod-touches-all-third-graders
It seems at some point everyday I struggle with or wonder about the consumption of technology in my life and I am a fairly discerning 41-year-old woman. I just spent this past weekend with my nieces and nephews who all have their own phones and iPods and texting and headphones are a real risk to the relational time we enjoy. I watch people around me everyday distracted by texting and cell phones and all this modern technology that has changed our world.
As I thought this through today, I wish I could write a curriculum that would teach technology etiquette and how to ensure relationships are not lost in the midst of modern tools. I would love to facilitate family therapy groups that work with families who are willing to live in no technology zones for a portion of every day to ensure that their family units stay strong.
But this is not about the third graders in Oregon or what I would like to do some day. How does this affect my life? I was sharing with my co-worker Laura, that I am committing to choosing the phone before email in my work day when appropriate. Often email is easier but I don’t want to choose easy, I want to choose relational. I am also choosing to limit my texting and spend some time each day off from Facebook and to return to reading my paper Bible as opposed to my Bible on-line. These are some of the changes I want to make in my own life to ensure I have a proper placement of these networking and communication tools in my day-to-day.
I do fear that all this access to these amazing tools is going to bring about a crisis of the lost art of relationship. People of all ages who have lost the ability and even worse, the desire, to communicate and spend time together. It is my hope that no matter how old we are, we will always believe in the power of looking one another in the eye, learning about another’s heart and passions by spending time together….not because of status’ posted….but because of words shared.