Intercultural Competence and Civic Engagement
One problem facing today’s youth is the availability for smart phones and the likes. Anywhere you go these days, you see small children playing games on the newest apple or Samsung devices. My cousin gave her son an IPod for his fourth birthday, and I believe that kids at that age are too young to have something that gives them access to the internet. There are other people who feel the same and believe that a child should not have access to such things until they are in high school. There was one example where a mother would not give her children a phone until the summer before their ninth grade year, claiming that that was when they were mature enough to appreciate the cellphone. And then there are others who give their children phones just for occasions when they are going somewhere like the movies with friends or to a school dance. In stores I’ve seen mothers give their little children their smartphones to play games on instead of consoling them, and this teaches the child to have a dependency with phones and the games on them. I believe that there is an age that is too young you a child to have access to smartphones and the things that can be accessed through them. Some things that have been done is that some schools have rules banning the usage of phones in classes and even between classes. Some even go as far as to ban the usage of phones through the entire day, which includes during lunch breaks. I believe it is important to keep this kind of thing going, because smartphones are a big distraction to even high school students.
While I believe that children under a certain age should not have access to smartphones, there are some who think it is a good thing for their children to have access to phones. One reason given for this is so that parents and children can communicate when and if something happens. Another reason why a parent may give to their children is if the child walks home from school. If I got out of school before my parents got off of work I would pick my brother up from school, who at the time was in third grade. And it amazed me how many kids who looked like they were in kindergarten or first grade would walk home after school. So, parents would give these children phones so that they could stay in touch with their children to make sure that they either made it to school safely or made it home safely. This is important to its members, because that is their perception of the age for children to have access to phones.
While some parents give their children phones to just give them one, others believe that it is a ‘rite of passage’ for their children to get a phone. Dr. Julie Lynn Evans has been a child psychotherapist for 25 years, and she says that the more children that she sees with phones that have access to the internet, the more cases she sees of children with psychological disorders. Children in this part of development don’t know how to process between things that are unhealthy for them. They use social cognition to store away anything they see on the internet and try to copy it. This leads to children seeing how others harm themselves in ways such as anorexia, and copying it. Some parents monitor their children and what they have access to on the internet. Other parents don’t monitor what their children look at and what they have access to and that is when children see things that they do not need to be looking at.
I have to encounter members of the opposite group whenever I go to visit family at holidays and such. Most of my family gave their children phones and tablets at a young age. I am eighteen and don’t have any form of social media, and I’m ok with that, but my eight year old cousin has had one for a year. Whenever I’m around them and they start talking about their accounts and the picture that someone posted, I just sit back and wonder why their parents don’t monitor what they are doing. This is because I don’t think an eight year old should have a Facebook, instagram, or other accounts like them. When they start getting me involved by showing me some of the stuff that they’ve posted or stuff their friends have posted, I just go along and look at it with them. This way I don’t upset anyone with saying what comes to mind when I encounter this. When preparing to engage with them, I just prepare myself for what’s to come by reminding myself what’s coming. For the heart set I have to keep self-monitoring myself to make sure I don’t say anything that I wouldn’t say to family. With the skill set I display behavioral flexibility, and act the way that my family would think one would behave at family gatherings.
Like I was saying above, when I have to be around family that let their eight year old have a social media account, I just have to act like that’s the norm. It bothers me to see people on the internet like that when there is so much that could hurt them out there. Because I like to be around family members I just go along with what they say when they talk about their social media accounts. And if they want to show me the newest game that they’ve gotten on their phone I let them show me, or tell me about it.
My views through the project did not change; I believe that there is a certain age when children should be allowed to have phones. I don’t believe that children aged five and eight should have that kind of stuff. It is important to think about others perspectives on something so that you can understand their reasoning’s for what they do. I learned that children will mimic what they see on the internet, even if that something is something harmful like anorexia.
M.R. (2011, November 29). Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Children in Elementary School Are Too Young for Cell Phones. Retrieved April 22, 2018, from http://go.galegroup.com.dcccd.idm.oclc.org/ps/retrieve.do?tabID=Viewpoints&resultListType=RESULT_LIST&searchResultsType=SingleTab&searchType=BasicSearchForm¤tPosition=3&docId=GALE%7CEJ3010912210&docType=Viewpoint+essay&sort=Relevance&contentSegment=&prodId=OVIC&contentSet=GALE%7CEJ3010912210&searchId=R1&userGroupName=txshracd2500&inPS=true
(n.d.). Opposing Viewpoints Online Collection. Cell phones in schools. Retrieved April 22, 2018, from http://go.galegroup.com.dcccd.idm.oclc.org/ps/retrieve.do?tabID=Reference&resultListType=RESULT_LIST&searchResultsType=SingleTab&searchType=BasicSearchForm¤tPosition=1&docId=GALE