Smart Phones, Social Media, & Technology, Oh My!
Every family somehow comes to a conclusion about technology, social media, and devices in their home. Gray and I have decided to be intentional about these decisions, and we also believe it is not too early to think about and consider what your values are. So, we have had an ongoing conversation with each other, with our friends, with our kids, and also with people we don’t even know because we want to learn more. When I say people we don’t even know, I mean a few people that have written books, done podcasts, written articles, and put information out for the world to see.
Here are some of my top recommendations:
12 Ways Your Phone is Changing You
by Tony Reinke
I encourage you to read that book even for your own benefit as a person navigating how to use their smart phone and social media widely. Smart phones, technology, and social media are amazing tools, but like anything else, they have great potential to be harmful. I love this balanced approach that helps open our eyes to the good, dangers, and amazing things about smart phones.
TGC Podcast by Tony Reinke: 12 Priorities for Parents in the Digital Age
I also encourage you to listen to the podcast—it is very practical without prescribing values and convictions for you. It helps you to know what you need to think through, understand devices, limitations, and navigating these things. I also value that it provides some research support and “why” behind all of these considerations.
Article by Desiring God: Should Teens Own Smartphones
This article is so good. It is actually written from a teen’s perspective that did not have a smart phone. I have also allowed our kids to read this so that they might understand more of why we don’t just say it’s okay, here’s a phone or to see another person’s perspective. I think it will help our kids have broader perspective and see and understand there are a variety of ways to handle this phenomenon.
I've also heard The Tech-wise Family is a really good book. I trust the sources I've heard from and have added it to my read list, I just can't speak for myself and recommend it.
We also purchased Disney's Circle for our home last fall. This was as a result of many people’s suggestions, it is mentioned in the podcast, and we are still learning about this device and its benefits.