Mike the Psych's Blog

What if psychologists ruled the world? In real life?


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Social media really is bad for kids (as if you didn’t already know this)

It only takes one hour a day on social media to make children unhappy, whether it’s Facebook or Snapchat or any other platform.

Researchers at the University of Sheffield asked 4,000 10-15 year-olds to rate how happy they were with different aspects of their lives.

They found that the more time children spent chatting online the less happy they were about their school and work, their appearance, their family and their life in general.

Spending only 1 hour a day on social networks reduced the probability of a child being completely happy with his or her life by 14%.

This is three times higher than the impact of being in a single-parent household and greater than the effect of playing truant.

However they did feel happier about their friendships. They just haven’t realised that social media friends are not real friends as previous research has shown. Spending time on social networks can actually make you feel more lonely.

Some experts argue that spending time on social networks diverse children from risky behaviours such as smoking and under-age drinking (but what about sexting?) while other studies show that it contributes to poor mental health, especially among girls. And in this study it was also the girls who felt worse about their appearance and their school.

90% of 16-24 year-olds use online social networks and younger users routinely get round the 13 year threshold for users. More than three-quarters of 10-12 year-olds have social media accounts. According to Ofcom children aged 8-11 send 11 hours a week on social media and 12-15 year-olds almost 19 hours, both figures double what they were 10 years ago.

But do the social network providers care? Of course not, it’s all about advertising revenue for them and the earlier they catch people the better as far as they’re concerned. You only have to look at the resistance of Google/YouTube to doing anything about the hate videos and pornography to realise what drives them. $$$$…

And it’s interesting that the likes of the late Steve Jobs and other Silicon Valley techno-billionaires didn’t allow their own kids to access social networks.


Helicopter Parents damage their kids

ulearn2bu

The fury over Brock Turner, the Stanford University student who was imprisoned for 6 months after sexually assaulting a woman who was too drunk to know what she was doing, has not only raised the issue of leniency for sports stars (sentenced by a judge with sports credentials) but also the influence of parents.

His father wrote the court arguing that a prison sentence was “a steep price to pay for 20 minutes of action“.

A former dean at the university, Julie Lythcott-Haims, said that it was consistent with a phenomenon she had witnesses developing at the university: helicopter parents.

During her tenure she said parents e-mailed professors to complain about their children’s grades, intervened in dormitory disputes, and refused to let their children grow up and take respocibility for their lives.

The father’s statement seems to me to be siding with his son at all…

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Aberfan……a lost generation of children

Kindadukish's Blog - I am not a number, I am a free man (The Prisoner)

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Half a century of grief poured out of the small town of Aberfan yesterday as it remembered a generation lost when a coal tip slid on to their school.

Among the 144 people killed on October 21, 1966, were 116 children. Yesterday the Prince of Wales led tributes and planted a tree in Aberfan’s memorial garden alongside one planted by the Queen. The prince said: “I can never forget the feeling of utter despair as I heard of the unspeakable tragedy.”

Survivors were among the 1,000 people attending a service in the cemetery where those who lost their lives were laid to rest. A minute’s silence was held at 9.15am, the moment Pantglas junior school was hit by 150,000 tonnes of black sludge. Among those at the service was Susan Maybank, now Robertson, whose rescue by Victor Jones, a policeman, was captured in a photograph.

Marilyn Morris, 64, said: “Six…

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Art Makes Children Powerful………….

Kindadukish's Blog - I am not a number, I am a free man (The Prisoner)

A visit to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park this morning as it was a lovely day and ideal for taking photographs. As I walked down into the park I saw the four large hoardings with such a powerful message.

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Give children free reign to express themselves through music, art, crafts, in fact anything that enables them to use their imagination and create new worlds for themselves……..and they do not need a computer or tablet to do that!

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Most Mums don’t feel guilty about going to work

woman_scientist_solve_custom_text_puzzle_12407Really? Well thats what a survey by Mumsnet found – only 13% felt guilty about spending their time away from their children and almost half said it made them happier to be at work.

Mumsnet’s Chief Executive said “We often think of working Mums as harassed and time poor, rushing from school to the office with not a second to spare. But the reality is often more complicated. Most want to work or work more hours”.

A third of stay at home mums admitted they would prefer to work and 52% said staying at home was harder than going to work. So it sounds like they want to go to work to get away from their children.

The survey polled 900 mothers. I’m not sure it’s a big enough sample to be representative of the 1.5 million Mumsnet members – which looks like a middle-class pressure group from what I’ve read – and in any case may not represent all mothers. So I’m guessing not many of the mothers polled will be in minimum wage jobs and they probably have good childcare arrangements.

It’s a catchy headline but I’m not sure it reflects reality for a lot of working mums or mums who would rather not have to work but stay at home to look after their kids.

Interestingly in this survey almost half of the mothers said having children didn’t make them feel “mumsy“. Not much maternal spirit there then.


Britain flies the flag in Copehagen

ulearn2bu

In the airport to be precise. Walking round during a 5 hour wait for a connection I couldn’t help noticing a number of W H Smith shops and Dixons. The prize must go to Hamley’s toy shop however which provided a life-size cuddly bear and its Danish minder to amuse the passengers especially the children who queued up to be photographed with them.P1010346

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