Essay Analysis

1796 words - 8 pages

In 2013, it was estimated that more than 91 percent of adults in America owned some form of mobile phone, of which 58 percent are Smartphone owners (Smith). With this knowledge, it is easy to surmise that Smartphones have become an accepted and common part of everyday life in America. Among these Smartphone owners, many are the parents of young children. Even with this enormous responsibility, there is seemingly no reduction in the number of daily hours spent on their Smartphones texting, emailing or browsing online. With such a high number of parents using mobile technology on a daily basis, it is not surprising that my preliminary research indicates that the amount of time a parent spends ...view middle of the document...

I would like for other adults to realize how easy it is for even the utmost devoted of Smartphone users, to disconnect themselves on occasion and the extraordinary benefits it will provide their child by doing so.
Review of Sources
The vast majority of my sources are articles and journals which were found on the Internet and online databases. With this being a current topic and one that is still in the primary stages of research, the material available at the library is more likely to be limited and potentially dated. For this reason, I believe the most up-to-date information is available online. With almost all sources I researched, authors agree that when a parent is giving more attention to a Smartphone than their child, the potential for some form of negative emotion, mental or physical impact is inevitable. Even with the awareness of potential harm, some of authors admitted they still struggle with the very thought of not having their Smartphone on hand at all times, even if this means ignoring their child (O'Keeffe). Among the more popular of justifications given for this, is that Smartphones provide them the ability to continue working, while still being able to take their child out and spend time with them.
I believe the research study “Patterns of Mobile Device Use by Caregivers and Children During Meals in Fast Food Restaurants” by Dr. Jenny Radesky and her colleagues at Boston Medical Center, ultimately provide the most unbiased information of all the sources to date. In the study, fifty-five different families were unknowingly observed while eating in a variety of fast food restaurants in the Boston area. Of the fifty-five randomly selected families with one or more children, forty of these parents used their mobile devices during their meal. Unlike with other sources, the focus of the study had nothing to do with why the parents were using these devices, or even the long term impact this behavior could have on children. Instead, the study concentrated on how absorbed the parents were by their devices and what reaction the children had. Among these forty users, almost all spent the entirety of the meal focusing on their mobile device. Rarely did they engage the child in any type of conversation, only looking up in-order to scold the child for attempts at getting their attention. Some parents forwent using the mobile device themselves in-order to pacify the child they were with. However, in most of these cases the parents had a secondary device of some sort, such as a tablet, that their attention was quickly absorbed by. While the researchers maintained that this study was by no means a reason to denounce mobile phone usage, they did express concern for the safety and wellbeing of children who are not being properly supervised.
In the article “The Perils of Texting While Parenting” written by Ben Worthen, provides valuable supporting evidence of the physical danger caused by being preoccupied by a Smartphone, a concern...

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