Hacks Newsletter Week 213: #WaitUntil8th


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My dear friend Lauren Hamlin shared with me the pledge, below, NOT to allow children to have cell phones before 8th grade. I was impressed by her logic, and it is 100% consistent with Hal’s and my deep concerns about the deleterious effects of iPads/iPhones on children’s social/emotional well-being and development. As such, we signed the pledge as requested. Thought you might be interested in seeing it too. Lauren’s compelling call to action is below.

“I just signed the Wait Until 8th pledge to delay giving my kids smartphones until at least the end of 8th grade. By banding together, this will decrease the pressure felt by kids and parents alike over the kids having a smartphone. There are so many reasons to wait.  

Many parents say ‘yes’ to the smartphone early because so many other families have said ‘yes.’ What if we said “not yet” together though? What difference would it make if our kids had a few more years smartphone free? 

Please note that this pledge is for smartphones only. If you would like your child to have a basic phone that just calls and texts, you still can sign the pledge! The basic phone avoids many of the distractions and potential dangers of the smartphone.  There are several basic phones here.

A pledge becomes ‘active’ once 10 or more families from a grade at a school sign. This takes the pressure off because the pledge only kicks in once at least 10 families sign from your grade.

To learn more and sign the pledge, please visit www.waituntil8th.org or check out Wait Until 8th’s Instagram account. 

If you’re into it, join me, sign the pledge and forward this email on to other parents! If you’re just interested in learning more, I encourage you to read the recent article from the Atlantic Monthly, End the Phone-Based Childhood Now or check out the book it was based on. 

Thank you!”

Have a friend or family member who would enjoy #HackstheNewsletter? Refer them here.


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There will be no end to the curveballs that life throws. As soon as you feel comfortable, another setback or new challenge will arise. Alyssa Rapp is driven to help people like her—the doers, those who keep swinging—seek to succeed in both life and career. Every challenge is an opportunity, are you making the most of yours?

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