Throughout the centuries our world has changed, becoming more globalised essentially dictated by technology completely changing people's perspectives on how far away something or someone is. This is called the "Shrinking world effect" where everyone and everything feel closer, yet I believe it has created one of the biggest problems humanity is facing, the virtual barrier an inexecutable invisible but silent killer of exploration and imagination within a child.


The development of technology has augmented children's hunger for a mobile phone. Due to this constant necessity, it has stripped away their creativity, restricting their developing imaginations leading them into this trap of thinking that there is nothing else for them to do except being online all the time. A prime example of this, is my younger sibling, looking down continuously on the iPad dismissing her surroundings instead of enjoying spending time with her family or even playing outside for a bit. In addition to this, social media has significantly impacted children's mannerisms this is seen through the way they dress, speak and act. Although influencers on platforms such as YouTube can be blamed, creating content treating people with disrespect or doing crazy activities leading to children putting themselves in danger. They aren't to fully blame as on the internet there are hardly any restrictions meaning that children can access all sorts of websites, videos, blogs, social media platforms or even video chat to random strangers online. Watching "influential" content can be harmful to one's mind especially in children as they are more likely to copy what someone else does, leading them to become quite "full of themselves" or even aggressive affecting their upbringings. Furthermore, due to this desire to copy another, it restricts a child developing their personality which is a shame as in our society today it is a relief to know that there are "different" people in our world who don't always think the same. This desire to imitate, is speeding up the process of maturity in a child which to a certain extent is beneficial. Shouldn't we let children be children and let them make mistakes as it is part of growing up?


However, the internet is not the only factor that contributes to the destruction of childhood. Programs which are broadcasted on popular channels such as Disney and Nickelodeon have drastically changed since I was a child, the channels now make shows which all revolve around technology! One show named Bizaardvark, launched in 2016 is about two girls who post videos in hope of becoming influencers and are constantly competing with others on who can make the best video, is this really what we want our children to aspire to be like? When I was younger I remember watching TV shows such as "The Wizards of Waverly Place" and I remember copying them pretending to be a wizard with my friends having a good laugh with them however I don't think children are now able to do the same thing as they mostly play together via online communicating through a microphone. 


Fortunately, not all hope is gone as it is still possible to guide the younger generation into the light by teaching them to use the internet in a way that will open their eyes to the wonders our world has to offer.

By Claudia Perez Garcia