Over the past five years, there has been a huge increase in media use among young people.
Five years ago, we reported that young people spent an average of nearly 6½ hours (6:21) a day with media—and managed to pack more than 8½ hours (8:33) worth of media content into that time by multitasking. At that point it seemed that young people’s lives were filled to the bursting point with media.
Today, however, those levels of use have been shattered.
Over the past five years, young people have increased the amount of time they spend consuming media by an hour and seventeen minutes daily, from 6:21 to 7:38—almost the amount of time most adults spend at work each day, except that young people use media seven days a week instead of five.
Moreover, given the amount of time they spend using more than one medium at a time, today’s youth pack a total of 10 hours and 45 minutes worth of media content into those daily 7½ hours—an increase of almost 2¼ hours of media exposure per day over the past five years.
It's scary. We have a teaching system based on a mix of classwork and homework. Without homework, the learning loop is broken. Yet for some kids, homework simply never wins against media consumption.
How should we prepare teachers to fight this?