March 26

Media Balance and Keeping Your Focus

For this lesson you are playing a short online game.  You will need to play on a laptop or computer.  It won’t work on a tablet or device.  So if that isn’t possible, just read through the rest of this post.

Play the Twalkers Game: Click Here!

This game teaches us when is the right time to be on your phone or device and when it isn’t.  Most often, too many things happening at once is incredibly distracting and can throw you off your focus and balance.

Think about how the game made you feel.  Was it a bit too much like your actual life right now?  Were you overwhelmed?  Was it difficult to play well and accomplish the required tasks when you were distracted?

I think many of us experience this feeling of overwhelm when we are trying to do too many things at once.  It is important to remember to prioritize and stay calm in the face of all that is thrown at us!  This video will offer you helpful advice on how to manage your time and keep focused.  Once you’ve watched it, I want you to post a comment on this page explaining at least one strategy from the video you will use to help you stay on track. 

May 29

Helping Students Find a Healthy Tech and Life Balance

I met with Grade 5 on Monday for a workshop about finding media balance.  They are only a few months away from middle school, and when that starts, a big part of the social life of a tween moves online.  But how much time they devote to social media, video games, and youtube, should really depend on finding their own healthy balance.  A place where they feel at their best.  A big part of that is thinking maturely and critically about the emotional impact of too much media.

It was great to hear so many students talk openly about how spending too much time playing video games makes them feel angry and frustrated.  Or about how they would prefer to be playing with their friends at the park then spending time on a screen.  It was also great to hear the positives of media… that for some, watching youtube helps them feel relaxed and happy.  Or making tic toc videos is a creative endeavour that they enjoy doing with friends.  It is important that children have the self-awareness to realize the impact that it has on them both good and bad, rather than there being a negative or nagging message coming at them that they spend too much time online.

Each student created a plan for a perfect day on paper made up of activities (both media and non-media) that would help them to feel their most balanced.  For each student this will look different and it is important that there is no judgement attached.  There is no right and wrong here, but there is a balance that feels right for most of us.  I should note though, that for students dealing with a video game or technology addiction, further steps and support will be needed to get them to that healthy place.

Ms. Thompson will be having each of her students write a blog post about a few reflection questions that I handed out to them.  I am very excited to hear more from them on this topic.