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Living the Game

Missive for a ban on violent media content for children under the age of 12

By Cris Rowan.

On January 22, 2016, a 17 year old boy from La Loche, Saskatchewan in Canada shot 11 people killing four, including two brothers in the shooter's home, and 7 students and teachers at his school.  The boy was described as a 'loner and chronic gamer'.  Previous news reports indicate that in fact all mass shooters are gamers, but of course parents not all gamers are shooters!

Parenting in the Social Age
By Hilary Smith.
"Back in my day....."

These famous words uttered by parents and grandparents around the world can cause new or young parents many an eye roll. Raising children isn't easy- we all know that. However, our family members often give their advice freely without pausing to consider how things have changed over the years.

Cris in the News

Huffington Post has recorded over 2.5 million Facebook likes for Cris Rowan's article 10 Reasons Why Handheld Devices Should Be Banned for Children Under the Age of 12.

By First Nations Health Authority - Sharing our Stories 
Heitsuk First Nation on the central coast has seen the noticeable positive effects in kids and has experienced participation rates like never before by using Cris Rowan's Crash N Bump program.

New from Zone'in

Infancia Virtual: La aterradora verdad de lo que la tecnologia le esta haciendo a nuestros hijos.

Virtual Child by Cris Rowan now available in Spanish for the Kindle.

Coming Soon from Zone'in

Zone'in is currently working on a Spanish version of it's popular Tech Talks.

Tech Talks Espańol Versión

Foundation Series Workshop Schedule

February 26, 2016 - Vancouver, BC
Workshop for special education teachers on impact of technology on children sponsored by Cross Current Conference.
Contact person: Mary Speaker 

March 19, 2016 - Edmonton, Alberta
Early Intervention workshop for professionals on impact of technology on children sponsored by Community Options.
Contact person: Heidi Brett 587-784-8390

Research and News Review

Childhood Development

By Cory Turner February 9, 2016
Erika Christakis' new book, The Importance of Being Little, is an impassioned plea for educators and parents to double-down on one, simple word: Play! 
By Deborah Farmer Kris January 27, 2016
In a GPS world, where synthesized voices tell us when to turn to get from point A to point B, do kids really need to learn how to read a map?

By Melanie Hempe January 31, 2016
Did you know that 80% of U.S. families did not buy a book last year and 33% of high school graduates never read another book for their entire life?
By A. Pawloski January 8, 2016
Four times a day, the doors of Eagle Mountain Elementary in Fort Worth, Texas, fling open to let bouncy, bubbly, excited kindergarteners and first-graders pounce onto the playground. 
Social Media & Mobile Technology

Broadcast on CBC Spark January 31, 2016
Tristan Harris is tired of tech companies creating distracting products that take up too much of your time and attention.

By Hawes Spencer, Sheryl Gay Stolberg And Richard Pérez-Peńa February 1, 2016
The arrest of two Virginia Tech students in the abduction and murder of a 13-year-old girl who posted on a Facebook group called Teen Dating and Flirting - and showed a neighbor girl texts she said she had exchanged with an 18-year-old man - has set off new concerns about the dangers to young people who seek liaisons on social media.

By David Finkelhor February 12, 2016
"Let's do a better job teaching children about age-appropriate relationships and helping them practice refusal skills."

The recent suicides of 17-year-old seniors at a high school, in Plano, Texas, as well as two students at a all-boy preparatory high school in Bronx, N.Y. underscore the disturbing increase in suicide amongst young people- up at least 13 percent from 2010.
Technology Balance

Child psychologist Yekaterina Murashova conducts an unusual experiment showing what happened when a group of teenagers were deprived of access to the internet and modern technology for a single day.

Published May 15, 2015 by Centre on Media and Child Health
Bring the National Day of Unplugging to your community. Sign up for an activity kit, conversation guide and more.

By Dr. Kelly Flanagan January 27, 2016
Every once in a while, every family needs to detox.
Beware, though. Because when you do, something will happen.....

By Wendy Joan Biddlecombe January 12, 2016

Video Games & Pornography
By Council on Communications and Media November 2009, Volume 124 / Issue 5. 108/5/:1222
Exposure to violence in media, including television, movies, music, and video games, represents a significant risk to the health of children and adolescents. Extensive research evidence indicates that media violence can contribute to aggressive behavior, desensitization to violence, nightmares, and fear of being harmed.
By Andrew & Julie Doan on YouTube January 31, 2016
Andrew Doan, MD, PhD and Julie Doan, RN are presenting at The 4th Annual Coronado SAFE Parenting Conference, Jan 30, 2016.

By Barna Group January 28, 2016
Barna Group interviewed American teens, young adults and older adults about their views on and use of pornography. Among many notable findings, researchers discovered that teens and young adults have a more cavalier attitude toward porn than adults 25 and older.

Broadcast on Fox 2 January 26, 2016
The Michigan State Police Department said that a man died after rolling his car while watching porn while driving.

By M Brand, J Snagowski, C Laier, S Maderwald 
Neuroimaging studies found ventral striatum activity when participants watched explicit sexual stimuli compared to non-explicit sexual/erotic material.

By Andrew Doan on YouTube December 18, 2015
Andrew Doan, discusses how and why Internet gaming disorder and online pornography addictions are real and why these addictions affect readiness of military service members.

By Stacey Teicher Khadaroo February 4, 2016
Utah may become the first state to declare pornography a public health crisis, with a state senator introducing a resolution to recognize a range of "societal harms" from the "epidemic."

By Cosima Marriner February 7, 2016
Liz Walker was only six years old when she was first shown porn. Read her story about the affect on her life.

Technology Addictions
By Nora D. Volkow, M.D., George F. Koob, Ph.D., and A. Thomas McLellan, Ph.D. published N Engl J Med 2016; 374:363-37 January 28, 2016; DOI: 10.1056/NEJMra1511480
"We conclude that neuroscience continues to support the brain disease model of addiction. Neuroscience research in this area not only offers new opportunities for the prevention and treatment of substance addictions and related behavioral addictions (e.g., to food, sex, and gambling) but may also improve our understanding of the fundamental biologic processes involved in voluntary behavioral control."

By Christopher L Groves, Douglas Gentile, Ryan L Tapscott 2015 Dec 15; 5(4):602-25. doi: 10.3390/bs5040602.
Three studies assessed the construct of pathological video game use and tested its predictive validity, they converged to show that pathological video game use seems similar to other addictions in its patterns of correlations with other constructs.

By Sarah Kessler January 8, 2016
Sarah shares her experience of Talkspace an app that makes therapy more accessible and affordable to people who need it.

By NR Kim, SS Hwang, JS Choi, DJ Kim, Z Demetrovics, O Király, K Nagygyörgy, MD Griffiths, SY Hyun, HC Youn, SW Choi published 2016 Jan;13(1):58-66. doi: 10.4306/pi.2016.13.1.58. Epub 2015 Oct 27.
The Internet Gaming Disorder (IGD) risk group showed differential psychopathological manifestations according to DSM-5 IGD diagnostic criteria and further studies are needed.

By Karsten Alcchholz December 3, 2015
If you play a computer game for more than 40 hours a week on average, skip classes, and don't shower for up to two weeks - is that an addiction? That was pretty much me some 15 years ago.
Tech Radiation

Published on Secretly Healthy February 3, 2016
iPhone 6 Plus produces the level of radiation exposure that is quite high, just under the legal limit of FCC, which is 1.6 watts per kilogram (W / kg).

By Martha Herbert and Cindy Sage Published December 2012.
With dramatic increases in reported autism spectrum conditions (ASC) that are coincident in time with the deployment of wireless technologies, we need aggressive investigation of potential ASC - EMF/RFR links.

By Caroline Alphonso January 29, 2016 in The Globe & Mail.
Can bean bag chairs and exercise bikes help struggling kids focus at school?
The thinking - and anecdotally it appears to be working - is that by addressing the emotional state of these students, by allowing them a chance to regulate their behaviour and calm themselves, they will be more willing to learn.

The Huffington Post's Screen Sense section is devoted to promoting mindfulness when it comes to how and when we use our devices. It is a place where parents can come to read the latest studies, reports and journalistic explorations about how technology is impacting their children, academically, socially and emotionally; where workers can learn how the "always on" culture is influencing their productivity and well-being; and where all of us can see the effects of this latest addiction on our daily lives.

Opinion By Jackson Bliss January 1, 2016
"Americans don't read." The truth is that most of us read continuously in a perpetual stream of words, but instead of reading novels, book reviews, or newspapers like we used to in the ancien régime, we now read text messages, social media, and bite-sized entries on Wikipedia.

By Martin Thirkettle and Graham Pike December 30, 2015
The average human attention span - how long we can concentrate effectively on a single task - was recently reported by Microsoft to have dropped below the level attributed to goldfish.

Conferences & Courses
Brain Development and the Impact of Technology - Edmonton AB (or live webcast)  May 4, 2016
Alberta Early Years Learing Series 2015/16 with Dr. Kelly Dean Schwartz, Associate Professor, School and Applied Child Psychology (SACP), University of Calgary

Zone'in Products

Sedentary, neglected, isolated, and overstimulated, the new millennium child can no longer pay attention and learn. Zone'in Products are designed by an occupational therapist to enhance child development and learning, ensuring successful futures.


Zone'in - enhancing attention, learning and self-regulation.

Move'in - teaches children to print, the foundation for literacy.

Unplug'in - builds skill and confidence in activities other than technology.

Live'in - media literacy guide for home, school and community.


Product Preview  


Virtual Child - The terrifying truth about what technology is doing to children

Virtual Child

By Cris Rowan, pediatric occupational therapist.

Virtual Child documents the impact technology has had on the developing child, and proposes tools and techniques to manage balance between activities children need for growth and success with technology use. 

Need more info? Visit


About the Author
Cris Rowan is a pediatric occupational therapist committed to enhancing child health and academic performance. Well known activist, speaker, sensory specialist and author, Cris is the "Go To" expert on child learning, development and technology overuse. Cris has provided over 200 workshops for health and education professionals, and is currently developing the Creating Sustainable Futures Program for a First Nations Community.
Training & Consultation

Instructor training for Foundation Series Workshops places pediatric occupational therapists on the cutting edge as experts in the field of technology's impact on child development.

Zone'in Training

Innovative team-based approach to manage balance between activities children need to grow and succeed with technology use.

Cris Rowan is now offering private phone/Skype consultations. 

Care to Donate?
Zone'in Programs Inc. and Cris Rowan are seeking your support and assistance to ensure sustainable and productive futures for our children. Find out more about how you can help us!
Contact Us
6840 Seaview Rd. Sechelt BC V0N3A4 
Tel: 1-888-896-6346
Fax: 1-877-896-6346
© Zone'in Programs Inc. 2016