Reflections on Summer 2.0 or Welcome to digiScope

Summer is over and the new school year is ahead. The long holiday can be a testing time, especially for parents: on one hand it proffers a well-deserved rest and valuable family time, on the other hand the lack of a fixed routine can draw even the most organised people into a chaos of laxity and procrastination. Bedtimes become later and later, snacking replaces proper mealtimes, and any vague attempts to work from home are doomed to epic failure. The…

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The physicality of reading: presence and authority of an eBook vs paper

Are you a reader? Have you ever been lost in a book for hours not realising that it has already got dark? Have you ever had a temptation to skip a few pages or to peak in the end of the book? Have you had an experience of words lifting of a page and hitting you, causing to put the book down to process what you’ve read? All of the experiences relate to the physicality of reading and the special…

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Tomato soup and parenting crime

My 16 year old is doing school exams. It is stressful, exhausting and relentless. There is A LOT of screen time involved. It is also cold and dark in the UK. Yesterday, in order to take a break from revision, he wanted to make a tomato soup. Not a tin version, but the one from Jamie Oliver’s. Great! I love when my kids take initiative, I love when they plan something and make it happen. I love it when they…

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Mental health and the power of rituals

I really wanted the first blogpost of the 2021 to be amazing and meaningful. Instead, I am grappling for words, trying to readjust and rebalance my family and work life once again, like many other parents and carers in the UK. So far, the New Year felt like a false start – another lockdown, plans cancelled and kids are back to studying from home. Personally, we are feeling the prospect of this lockdown more than before. Winters here are miserable…

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Why thirteen is the worst age for social media

Parents know very well the pressure to let their children have a social media account even before the legal age of thirteen. As mum, I would argue that the limit should be flexible and it all depends on the particular family and the child. Although as a researcher, I would argue that from a developmental point of view thirteen is still far too early, and even 14-15 is still not ideal.  In 2016, when I started visiting schools in London…

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Can technology kill motivation?

Harry was an active and lively little boy. He loved cars, insects, loved playing football. He was a ball of energy and imagination. He enjoyed climbing trees, building Lego and playing X-box with Dad. Gradually, as Harry grew older, his interests narrowed down. By some unknown reason he stopped enjoying being outdoors as much, he stopped enjoying doing anything, apart from computer games. His days would be filled just with school and online games. Actually, only one game. Nothing else…

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Close your eyes, take a deep breath

Thoughts on freediving*, mental health and technology. One calm deep breath and I glide into the calm deep sea. The underwater world is breath taking, literally. The blue abyss is simultaneously alluring and terrifying. The enchanting play of light above my head is soothing. I trace the red dots on the safety line and feel the cold pressure hugging me tighter and tighter with every meter. I equalise the mask and relax into the tight feeling inside my chest, negotiating…

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Four Thousand Steps

Here is an enlightening story about a girl who went on an outdoor adventure and a Fitbit that went too far. Preamble. I must admit, I love sports. I love setting and reaching fitness goals. I also find, that counting progress makes me feel good. Before the lockdown I could barely do fifteen press-ups, but now I can easily do thirty five. A year ago, running 5k seemed like a major achievement, now, 10k is a nice weekly run. It…

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Tech and hurry

why I think that navigation apps are stupid I must admit that one side of social isolation policy I really like, is the absence of traffic. Since we moved out of London, I hit the road almost daily. Daily I see a lot of traffic. Miles of it, hours of it. Traffic is something that always is in the way of getting anywhere on time. It constantly makes me a liar. “I’ll be there at five… around five….. definitely before…

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The why and how to minimise distractions

5 PRACTICAL TIPS on how to organize our space when working or studying from home. Technology transcends and disrupts time and space and deletes boundaries between work and life, compressing everything into an urgent NOW that demands our immediate attention. Digital technology has very little limitations, but human mind and psyche is limited. Our attention is a finite resource. Therefore, before the burn-out comes, before the fuse goes and we become an overstretched emotional mess, we need to take back…

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REFOCUS – Digital parenting course

Join us at REFOCUS – Digital parenting course Are you concerned about the effects of screen time on your family life? Are you worried about the impact of social media and gaming addictions?   Would you like help developing a clear digital strategy for your family?  To book followhttps://kingsgate.online/refocus   REFOCUS is an essential course that will: Provide research-based tools and clear strategies around screen use, specifically tailored to your family needs.  Help to build digital resilience and make you and your children more…

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