Parents are worried: Henrik, 11, spends several hours in front of a screen every day

Parents are worried: Henrik, 11, spends several hours in front of a screen every day
Parents are worried: Henrik, 11, spends several hours in front of a screen every day
Should be screened: Parents Katherine Hernblad-Due and Martin Hernblad-Due believe that children should be screened in lessons. Here with children Henrik (11), Camille (8) and Heni (4).

ASKER (VG) Parents Katherine and Martin Hernblad Duet fear their children will use the screen at school: – There will be too much screen time.


– I’m afraid the total time is too long for young children.

This is what Katherine Herniblad Dieu, mother of three, says. VG visits Katherine and her husband Martin Herniblad duet at home in Asker, with their children Henrik (11), Camille (8) and Henny (4).

Henrik and Kamil each got one ChromebooksChromebooksA Chromebook is a type of computer From Vardåsen School in Asker, when they started first grade.

Mother Katherine Vardasen describes her as a lovely teacher. They are satisfied with the teachers. However, screens are a new phenomenon for children, and it is important for parents to ask critical questions, as you might think.

– Then the screens can be implemented in a hygienic and reasonable way, says the mother of three.

screen at school

– You come to school and the teacher says “bring a Chromebook, read a book and so on”, says Henrik, who is in the fifth grade.

He thinks it’s fun to learn on a Chromebook.

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– I can do math tasks faster on my Chromebook.

During Thursday’s math class, the digital math book still had some technical challenges, and the class ended up watching a movie instead, according to Henrik.

So, was the movie about mathematics?

– No, we continued with a movie we had started before, he replies.

Critical: Some of the children’s tasks have similarities to games, which parents in the Hernblad Duo family question.

Both he and his little sister Camille, who is in third grade, think there can be just too much screen time in the day.

– Are there hours when you don’t use the screen?

– There aren’t many hours we don’t use. The gym is the only thing, Henrik says.

– I asked one of the teachers how much time first-graders spend on the screen at school, and she told me an hour or two every day. Catherine says that’s a lot.

– “something!”

Children Henrik and Camille use digital learning tools on Chromebooks. Katherine believes that quests in these times have many similarities to games.

– It’s like “ding!” You’re right. The younger they are, the louder the sound effects.

“You don’t get that when you write with regular pen and paper,” she says.

Parents fear that these effects will lead to children becoming addicted to “dopamine rushes”.

The brain should always have a reward, says Martin.

The father is afraid that this will make everyday life boring.

“When you have to do things that normally provide a dopamine stimulus, like being with friends or taking a walk — it gets really boring,” he says.

screen during lunch

Catherine also interacts with screens used outside of teaching. Henrik and Camille say they watch the big screen in the classroom during their lunch breaks.

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– We used to read books and such, but we haven’t since we started in the fifth grade, says Henrik.

Katherine says she had previously brought up with the school that she would like children not to be looking at screens during lunchtime.

– Then they won’t be allowed to socialize, it’s a little silly.

Control: The tablet from school is just another screen for which they have to set rules and limit them, says mother Katherine Herniblad Due.

Catherine worries about the consequences of screen use for children.

– I don’t want the screen to steal time from social learning at school, and using the screen is very calming, it removes social interaction, says the mother.

Parents lack knowledge about screen use at school. They believe that the amount of screen use is up to each teacher and school. Katherine wishes more researchers and health staff would speak up.

Catherine adds that she would like to see guidelines for screen use in schools better grounded in research based on experience in the field, preferably with input from other countries.

screen at home

Katherine wishes they didn’t have to deal with a Chromebook at home. She thinks it’s hard to keep track of the kids’ work from a Chromebook. Plus, the Chromebook becomes another device that parents have to control.

– There will be another element of tension for the family, because we have another screen that we must set rules for and limit.

– I wasn’t tough enough to stand up and say I don’t want my kid to bring home a Chromebook.

However, parents confirm that they are optimistic about using digital teaching aids also in school, but they want to use less screen.

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– It’s good that they have digitally equipped themselves for the rest of their lives, I think, says Catherine.

screen on the brain

Parents say it’s not the use of screens at school that causes anxiety. At the turn of the year, they gave in to the 11-year-old who begged for Snapchat.

– Katherine says it’s my exclusion if you’re not involved.

The boys in the class have a Snapchat group, where they arrange to meet at basketball or bike rides, among other things.

– If he had not been there, he would not have joined.

At the same time, the parents see that Henrik can easily be absorbed in social media.

– There are people who made this so that you get addicted, and 11 year old kids also use it. Martin says it’s no good.

– The total amount will be very large, says Catherine.

– Discuss usage regularly

The principal of Asker’s Vardåsen school, Trude Kristoffersen, writes in an email to VG that she is happy to engage and discuss the content of the school’s learning activities.

– Our teachers regularly discuss the use of screens, and follow up on public discussion and research on the topic. We are seeing a conscious and critical attitude towards digital teaching aids, both among staff and parents, and would like to discuss this further with them and pupils, says Kristofferson.

The Rector confirms that Asker municipality has a conscious commitment to learning using digital tools. For many years, the municipality has used Chromebooks for students at all levels.

– We see many benefits of digital learning activities. Many students are motivated to explore and learn. Digital activities provide a good opportunity to differentiate, to meet students wherever they are in their learning process. Kristofferson explains that through the various sharing tools, students gain a good experience in co-writing and creative collaboration.


Hanisi Anenih

Hanisi Anenih

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