Ten resources for considering the AAP and U.S. Department of Education policies on screen time, technology and digital media use by young children

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Written by Jenna Herdzina, Policy Intern

yelizs class 2This past October, American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) published their new guidelines on using digital media with young children, which had not been updated in 17 years. The TEC Center supported this much-needed update for families and practitioners due to AAP’s increased focus on helping parents learn how to curate high-quality digital media tools and join their children in using and exploring technology together. The AAP chose to leave guidelines on children’s time with media due to parents requests for time limits. However, it is difficult for many children and tech experts to set specific time limits on digital media use if children are using these tools to create, investigate and explore the world around them, especially in pro-social situations.

While evaluating the content of digital media with children, the critical elements to pay attention to are: engages, promotes creativity, encourages discovery, and can be explored together. There are so many activities and uses for technology in the early years. With the ever-expanding nature of technology, one cannot simply require or set limits based on time without considering the three C’s that Lisa Guernsey of New America has defined for us as the individual child and family, the content of the technology and the context. Below are some resources to help you think about and critique guidelines of screen time and digital media use for young children. Below you will find many resources including AAP’s main site with the policy statements laying out their new guidelines, Erikson Institute’s statement regarding these new guidelines, as well as blogs reacting to the practicality of them.

Ten Resources:


November 18, 2016
STEM 2026
Image courtesy of Ms. Liza Sullivan By Jenna Herdzina, Policy Intern at TEC Center The Department of Education’s report, STEM 2026: A Vision for Innovation in STEM Education, addresses the current state of the STEM community, workforce and education, and how they should improve in the Read more →
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October 21, 2016
Erikson’s Technology in Early Childhood Center in the News
We have released a statement about the American Academy of Pediatrics’ new recommendations for media use by young children. Our director, Chip Donohue, Ph.D., spoke with Slate about the pros and cons of the new screen time guidelines. Dr. Donohue and his work were Read more →
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