Use of technology and screentime at EBI

I participated in a tour of EBI in Oakland and was mostly impressed with what I saw, but I'm wondering about their technology use policies. It was briefly covered during the tour, but I felt like the topic was glossed over. My partner and I believe very strongly that screen time is harmful, and at a young age they don't need to stare, swipe, and tap at screens. Our child has never seen us watch TV, and believes the iphone and ipad are how we chat with grandma and grandpa who live far away, that's it. 

Can any current parent explain to me how it really is in the classrooms when it comes to ipads and screens? Is it used everyday for 30 minutes, every week for an hour, for special events only... ???  Our child would be heading into one of the pre-kinder classes (yellow or blue/green, I think). 

Thank you.

Parent Replies

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My child is in pre-k at EBI. He has zero screen time. He has been there for two years. He also does not know what the television (which resides in the basement) does. 

My daughter is in second grade. In kindergarten she used an iPad for a math or reading center- that means she had about 5 minutes of screen time a few days a week.  The screen time is used with a purpose. In first grade she used an iPad for a special project and reseched weather patterns in a city of her choice. 

I encourage you to send a quick email to the admissions director and she can give you detailed answers. The director of pk-1st can also explain to you and and why screens are used for kinder and first grade. 

Happy parent 

Our son is in kindergarten at EBI and it sounds like (from his reports) they use iPads about once a week (probably for about 1/2 hour). He was in preschool there for one year and they didn’t use iPads at all in preschool. We are very happy with school, BTW. Great teachers, curriculum and community! 

Hola! We have been at EBI for a few years and been happy with their technology policy for my two kids. In Pre-K iPad use was extremely limited with teachers using them to share videos to closely support something in the lesson. In Kindergarten, I recall that the kids using technology (again, limited) to help with reading and writing. We have been really happy with EBI and my heart sings when I can hear my kids speaking Spanish. Hope this helps your decision …  Signed…. Conservative Mom

My son started EBI in Verde, 1 year before kindergarten.  He is now in 2nd grade.  Like your family, he grew up with no TV at home to this day and has never complained about the lack of one.  We are also wary about the harms of excess screen time, especially at a young age.

EBI partners with the organization, Common Sense Media, who have periodically given workshops to parents at the school on this topic.

The use of computers/tablets/screens varies throughout the school years and I am happy so far with its use.  Screen time is used for its advantages and not as a replacement for live, interactive teaching.  For example, because EBI is an International Baccalaureate (IB) World School, they automatically have connections to other IB world schools around the world.  I recall my son's class having Skype group conversations with same age classrooms in Spanish-speaking countries having an opportunity to ask questions about how life in their country is different from the US