Facebook is bad for kids

Social networking siteFacebook appears to have the magical power that helps kids fail in school.

Kiwi researchers at Canterbury University found that the more times a kid checked the site, the more likely they were to fail in class.

Psychology masters student Milesa Cepe found that nearly 40 percent of high school students who checked Facebook between 21 and 31-plus times a day either had low grades or failed.

Apparently those 49 percent of students who checked Facebook up to just four times a day had grades that were merit and above.

She surveyed 106 high school pupils, 211 university students and their parents in the study.

More than 93 percent of high school pupils and university students checked Facebook at least once a day. High school kids spent much more time online.

Her theory is that the kids may already be struggling academically and Facebook is used as stress relief.

She pointed out that the 60 percent of students who had high Facebook usage, 21 to 31-plus times a day, also did well.

Schools often encouraged pupils to use tablets and laptops but did not teach them how to manage their downtime from study effectively.

This meant that kids were spending “reward time” on Facebook when they completed an assignment, instead of moving on to the next one.

Hornby High School principal Richard Edmundson told Fairfax Media that kids should should not use Facebook at school, although it was jolly difficult to stop them.

This century encourages learning anywhere, any time and anyhow, he said.

But Edmundson did add that it was unlikely that using Facebook is causing low academic achievement. But it could be an outcome of a lack of engagement with learning.

“One upon a time they would be doing something else, like watching Days of Our Lives and daytime soaps.”

In his day, the same thing was managed by watching telly and in particular soap operas like Days of Our Lives.