Posted in ECI 833

Productivity or endless distractions…?

This weeks blog post once again reminds me to think about the amount of time I spend on the Internet and to what extent am I using my time wisely! Am I being productive or surrounded by an ‘endless series of distractions?’

For me, mindless TV watching at the end of the day is what allows me to escape a busy and hectic day! Some people read a book, soak in a hot bath, watch sports, go to the gym or have a glass of wine. I choose all of the above but often times, I end up watching a favourite TV show.

I used to only be plugged into ONE technology device at a time. Sometimes the phone would ring and I would stop and have a conversation, or god forbid, have to call the person back after my show!

Jump to the next decade where I had a desk top computer in my spare room. I would come home from work, check my emails, make supper, and then watch my favourite TV show. It seemed so simple then:)

Now, I have a macbook computer AND a smart phone which connects me to more distractions than I can possibly keep track of. All I know is that I can easily become extremely unfocused on the task at hand.

In the blink of an eye, I went from this…..


Photo Credit

to this….


Photo Credit: Teen Safe

Week after week, the topics discussed tend to take me back to my childhood. A time when I didn’t have a computer or cell phone to distract me. In relation to this weeks topic and the video assigned, my life was once ‘Tabless Thursday!’

The fact is, the Internet is both productive and extremely distracting! I have spent countless hours being productive on the Internet as well as feeling distracted by the tabs I have open or the articles and videos that I scroll through daily.

The development of emails in the 1990s allowed me to communicate with co-workers, friends and family in a more time consuming and affective way. At times, I do prefer to pick up the phone and call someone rather than send an email or text; but sending an email to a group of 10-15 people can take less than 10 minutes, rather than having to call people one by one. According to Lifehack’s article, there are 5 ways to make sure the Internet increases your productivity. This article provides ways to be productive when sending emails or when searching the web.

Do you follow some of these productivity tools?

According to Lifehack’s article; “15 Websites That Make Your Time Spent on the Internet More Productive and Quora’s article; What are the most productive ways to spend time on the Internet?;” there are numerous websites that Internet users need to know about! These websites range from vocabulary, coursera, ted talk videos, how stuff works, good reads to wikipedia. Check them out for some great suggestions!

There is no doubt that our productivity can be improved and simplified in relation to this video. The question is how much of a distraction is the Internet? Undeniably, the Internet forces its users to be partially focused on more than one task at a time. More often than not, Internet users are faced with multitasking at numerous times of the day.

I really can’t imagine how many times my focus is shifted throughout a day. I am constantly thinking about what I have to do next, answering questions, planning, dealing with technology tools, and guiding lessons. To say that my day is fast paced is an understatement. It seems that no matter what profession you are in, people are on high alert!

It’s one thing for adults to be affected by multitasking but it is a whole other thing for children. Having balance is more important now than ever. Too many negative effects of being Plugged in to technology are becoming more researched and are important to comprehend. The more clear our understanding is of the impacts on ourselves and children due to multitasking, the better choices we can make.



 This Huffington Post’s article shares the implications of what constantly being Plugged into technology is doing to teens bodies. Here are a few of the statistics;

  1. It’s estimated that children ages 8 to 18 spend an average of seven hours a day behind screens.
  2. Teens send an average of 3,417 text messages each month.
  3. 97 percent of adolescents have at least one electronic device in their bedrooms.

An InfoWars article describes the Internet as the Matrix, indicating that the average American spends more than 10 hours a day using an electronic device. Broken down, our connection to the Internet looks something like this;

  • Watching live television: 4 hours, 32 minutes
  • Watching time-shifted television: 30 minutes
  • Listening to the radio: 2 hours, 44 minutes
  • Using  a smartphone: 1 hour, 33 minutes
  • Using Internet on a computer: 1 hour, 6 minutes

Sadly, the common phrase, “you are what you eat,” has different and yet, accurate connotations.

Taking a step back to recognize the implications of our choices in regards to our ‘daily dose’ of technology is essential! We all know that the Internet is extremely useful, productive, educational, amazing, interesting, entertaining, etc. What are we missing out on while we are so focused on technology?

This is a great video that makes you think about your technology use?

What are your thoughts about it?




My name is Jennifer and I am a Grade 4/5 teacher with the Regina Public School Board. I am taking my 8th class towards my Master's degree in Curriculum and Instruction. EC&I 833 Foundations of Educational Technology: History, Theory, and Practice.

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