The Blue Whale Challenge

Drawing of Blue Whale Challenge and girl on edge of tall building

What is The Blue Whale Challenge?

“The Blue Whale Challenge” also known as “The Blue Whale Game” is a dangerous social media trend that encourages vulnerable young people to commit suicide. The game which is said to have originated in Russia over a year ago, requires players to complete daily tasks which escalate in intensity over a 50 day period. Many of these tasks include self-mutilation, sleep deprivation and exposure to disturbing images and music.

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Five Best Ways to Reduce Your Children’s Online Time

Written by Olivia Jones 

The beauty of our kids growing up in the digital era lies in the amount of available information that simplifies and allows learning through many sources, and turns it into a fun, independent activity. Kids enjoy their freedom to explore a whole universe at their fingertips, shared in a visually appealing and verbally rich environment that is the World Wide Web.

But one of the downsides of this way of life is that kids tend to spend too much time sitting, looking at a computer screen, and missing out on all the wonderful activities that involve spending time offline. Here are a few tips on how you can encourage your kids to creatively spend their time doing different things without taking away their digital freedom!

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Stop Googling. Let’s Talk. — Why Parents and Kids Need to Reclaim the Art of Conversation

Family Communicating

Cell phones have given us the ability to be “connected” at all times. In the middle of a party, around the dinner table, and even on the playground, we pull out our smartphones to find information, see what our friends are doing, and feel more linked with the world.

But according to Sherry Turkle, a professor at M.I.T. and the author of “Reclaiming Conversation: The Power of Talk in a Digital Age,” our phones are making us far less connected than ever before.

Turkle explains that constant phone checking is making us less empathetic and, therefore, less likely to form friendships and meaningful relationships. In an article for the New York Times, “Stop Googling. Let’s Talk,” she says the situation is especially problematic for young people who are so accustomed to being behind their phones that they don’t know how to engage in person.

But, Turkle argues that giving up our phones isn’t the solution to the problem. Adults and children can reclaim their ability to connect and feel empathy through good, old-fashioned conversation. By putting away our phones during social situations and actively engaging in more authentic in-person conversation, both children and adults can increase their ability to be more empathetic and connected to those around them.

To learn more about how phones are impacting the relationships and communication skills of young people, read the full article on nytimes.com.