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Poster for Wait Until 8th

Wait Until 8th

Coming on December 7

Run Time: 90 min.

What age is appropriate for children to receive a smartphone? This program endeavors to provide some answers to that question.

The Wait Until 8th Pledge empowers parents to delay giving children a smartphone until at least 8th grade. Together we can help decrease the pressure to have a phone at an early age.  Smartphones are distracting and potentially dangerous for children yet are widespread in elementary and middle school because of unrealistic social pressure and expectations to have one. These devices are quickly changing childhood for children.

Playing outdoors, spending time with friends, reading books and hanging out with family is happening a lot less to make room for hours of snap chatting, instagramming, and catching up on YouTube. Parents feel powerless in this uphill battle and need community support to help delay the ever-evolving presence of the smartphone in the classroom, social arena and family dinner table.

Naomi Schaefer Riley (Speaker) is a Wait Until 8th Board member and a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute focusing on issues regarding child welfare as well as a senior fellow at the Independent Women’s Forum. She also writes about parenting, higher education, religion, philanthropy and culture. She is a former columnist for the New York Post and a former Wall Street Journal editor and writer, as well as the author of seven books. Her book Be the Parent, Please offers “tough mommy tips”: realistic, practical, applicable advice for parents who recognize that unlimited technology access is a problem, but who don’t know where to start in taking back control. These tips cover everything from placating an antsy toddler at your local favorite restaurant to best practices for keeping your teens safe from unsavory sites.

Cristina Napolitano (Moderator) is the Director of Family Engagement at The Hawthorn School in Bedford. She, along with Hawthorn faculty and teachers, is dedicated to helping students reach their full intellectual, physical, moral, and spiritual potential. Cristina is also vice president at Family Enrichment USA, a non-profit that provides resources and courses for parents. Prior, Cristina was a representative for the International Federation of Family Development at the United Nations. Here she worked with lawmakers and government officials to help draft family-friendly policies.

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