Carol Wood

If you are a parent of a school-aged student, you are likely wondering if your children are being negatively affected by the use of so many technological devices. 

From cell phones, computers, music devices, electronic notebooks, Facebook, Twitter, etc., students are likely involved in their use.  Is all of this electronic interaction negatively impacting students’ attention span, memory skills, writing, and interpersonal communication?



As a parent and educator who has observed many students throughout my career, just from sheer observation, it appears that students today are thwarting their memory skills and their ability to tend to tasks for any measurable amount of time due to a seeming addiction to technology.  What began with instant messaging that hampered students grammar, word usage, sentence construction, idea development and other components of written language, has now evolved into the use of various means of social media.  Students are juggling so much input and mental stimuli all at once that it appears that their attention span is dimensioning as a result.  

A quarter of people polled in the Lloyds study said they regularly forget the names of close friends or relatives, and seven percent even admitted to momentarily forgetting their own birthdays.  Lack of attention can have a serious impact on task performance and increases the risk of accidents; such as left pots and pans on the stovetop.  Last year more than $1.6 billion dollars of damage was caused by people not concentrating properly, the research found. 

Following are some interesting and shocking statistics:

* People spend 700 billion minutes on Facebook each month

* 41.6% of people access emails on their mobile phones

* Facebook users install 20 million applications every day, most of which are distractions

* Social media addiction is real!  People report phantom phone vibration, reaching for a phone that doesn’t exist, fidgeting and restlessness.

* Technology creates interruptions, and every time we are interrupted, our brain must reorient itself on what we were doing before interrupted.

* The average office worker checks his or her email inbox 30-40 times per hour, once every 1.5 minutes

* 500,000 people join Twitter each day

* 12 million twitter users following 64 or more twitter accounts.

If you would like to share what you are doing in your family to prevent the symptoms described above of excessive use of technology, please email them to me at We have a responsibility as parents, grandparents, and adult mentors to train young people in ways that will benefit them throughout their lifetime as they prepare for college and a career.  

Carol is the Founder & Owner of Total Learning Concepts, Inc. For more information visit and Facebook: