By cartoonist Signe Wilkinson
Today’s children are Always Connected, reports Sesame Street Workship and the Joan Ganz Cooney Center. Nearly one quarter of young children (ages 0 to 5) use the Internet at least once a week and just under half of all 6-year-olds play video games.
Almost nine out of ten children over age 5 watch television, averaging at least three hours of television a day.
Co-viewing — children watching TV with a parent — promotes learning, the report advises. But parents should make sure children don’t spend too much time “connected” to media.
Wi-fi fi Turns Arizona Bus Ride Into a Rolling Study Hall, reports the New York Times.
Students endure hundreds of hours on yellow buses each year getting to and from school in this desert exurb of Tucson, and stir-crazy teenagers break the monotony by teasing, texting, flirting, shouting, climbing (over seats) and sometimes punching (seats or seatmates).
But on this chilly morning, as bus No. 92 rolls down a mountain highway just before dawn, high school students are quiet, typing on laptops.
Morning routines have been like this since the fall, when school officials mounted a mobile Internet router to bus No. 92’s sheet-metal frame, enabling students to surf the Web. The students call it the Internet Bus, and what began as a high-tech experiment has had an old-fashioned — and unexpected — result. Wi-Fi access has transformed what was often a boisterous bus ride into a rolling study hall, and behavioral problems have virtually disappeared.
The router costs $200; monthly Internet service is $60. Even if some students are playing games instead of doing homework, it’s not a bad deal.
My stepson commutes to his job at Google on a wi-fi-equipped bus. It’s a great way to extend the day.