Readings & Online Resources

Please join us on LinkedIn at ZILLYDILLY USERS GROUP!

MyDigitalFamily, ZillyDilly, and/or Dr. S have no business nor other commercial interests in the publications or sites listed here and bring them to your attention solely because we think they will be of interest to you.


  • Boston researchers Lawrence Kutner and Cheryl Olson’s very readable Grand Theft-Childhood (Simon & Schuster, 2008, ISBN 10 0-7432-9951-5) is a fascinating, balanced current study of video games and includes practical advice for parents in the last chapters.


  • Born Digital (Basic Books, 2008, ISBN 978-0-465-00515-4) by attorneys John Palfrey and Urs Gasser is a superb and readable description of the challenges and rewards facing our current generation of children.


  • Dade Hayes, a father and superb journalist, details his own study of how children’s media has evolved into the enormously profitable industry and how ‘money rules’ the merchandising spin-offs aimed at preschoolers, now so much part of our culture in Anytime Playdate (Free Press, 2008, ISBN 10: 1-4165 4683-9.)


  • Children, Adolescents, and Media Violence (Steven, J. Kirsh, Sage Publications, 2006, ISBN: 0-7619-2876-2) is a readable, balanced, and well thought out, and well-organized guided tour of the actual empirical research on the passionate decades-long debate.


  • Handbook of Children and the Media edited by pioneers and scholars Dorothy G. Singer and Jerome L. Singer (Sage Publications, 2001, 0-7619-1955-4) is the authoritative and comprehensive compendium of research, scholarly works, and sourcebook current as of the publication date.


  • Editors Miriam J. Metzger and Andrew J. Flanigan assembled scholarly writings on positive and negative aspects of Digital Media, Youth, and Credibility (The MIT Press, 2008, ISBN: 978-0-262-56232-4.)


  • Editor Tara McPherson gathers fascinating writings about Digital Youth, Innovation, and the Unexpected (The MIT Press, 2008, ISBN: 978-0-26263359-8.)


  • James P. Steyer, a well-connected parent and advocate writes a scathing critique of the children’s media industry and provides suggestions to parents (The Other Parent, Atria Books, 2002, ISBN: 0-7434-0583-8.)


  • The Wired Homestead? (M.I.T. Press, 2003 , ISBN -10: 0262700948), edited by Joseph Turow and Andrea L. Kavanaugh, is an outstanding, must-read scholarly sourcebook that offers up-to-date essays, review articles, and original research by superb leading thinkers. The breadth and depth of current thinking and the scholarly work of most of the first-rate pioneers in this area promise a prolific future of vital research that deserves public support.


  • Children in the Digital Age (Praeger, 2002, ISBN 1- 0275976521), edited by Sandra L. Calvert, Amy B. Jordan, and Rodney R. Cocking, has earlier but worthwhile scholarly essays, review articles, and several actual original studies by leading scholars on TV and the Internet, and is a must read for those serious about this subject.


  • In Generation Digital (M.I.T. Press, 2007, ISBN 10: 0262134780), scholar and self-admitted activist Katherine C. Montgomery summarizes the historical struggle for control of children’s minds between family and child development advocates and diverse merchandising, e-commerce, entertainment, and civil liberty forces. The author describes how, having succeeded for decades with sophisticated marketing techniques in TV, commercial interests are now revving up powerful interactive media techniques to bypass parents and reach directly into playpens and playgrounds to capture ever-younger naïve consumers.




  • Buy, Buy Baby (Houghton Mifflin Company, 2007, ISBN 10:0-618-46351-8) by Susan Gregory Thomas, a very capable journalist and mother, gives an intelligent, excellent, readable, extremely informative, and very well-written discussion of the spread of the marketing culture into the lives of babies and their parents.


  • Reporter and mother Lisa Gurnsey provides an excellent, readable, intelligent, and balanced review of current research on the effects of interactive media on the cognitive and emotional development of preschoolers in Into the Minds of Babes (Basic Books, 2007, ISBN 10: 0-465-02798.)


  • Research beginning early in the century that demonstrated the importance of early detection and prevention has resulted in many techniques and psychiatric interventions. (Romer, Daniel, and Walker, Elaine F. (eds), Adolescent Psychopathology and the Developing Brain: Integrating Brain and Prevention Science. Oxford University Press. New York (2007), especially part IV.)


  • An excellent readable summary of the impact of TV by Drs. Christakis and Zimmerman, child development specialists at the University of Washington (The Elephant in the Living Room, Rodale, 2006, ISBN-10:1594862761.)


  • A wonderful resource for beginning to teach media literacy is the Center for Media Literacy, Reading Room ( and the US government’s Sources.


  • Healthy brain maturation and psychological development through childhood and adolescence and beyond depend on how your child advances along two basic interwoven processes: separation and individuation (Mahler, M. (1979). The Selected papers of Margaret S. Mahler: Separation-Individuation, volume II, NY.)


  • Experts have long understood that infants attempt to master their early days by inventing a clever halfway measure to assist their transition: an attachment to a transitional object (Winnicott, D.W. (1971). Playing and Reality. New York. Basic Books.)


  • Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other (Basic Books, 2011) is must reading for anyone who has a cell phone; and a must MUST if you also have a child. Dr. Sherry Turkle, a first rate thinker, veteran researcher, and keen observer, surprises us with how thoroughly and rapidly the evolving human-machine interface is changing our lives. Dr. Turkle’s findings suggest that some major fundamental human brain / mind processes that underlie our uniquely human feeling, thinking, and social interactions have been shifting in subtle but powerful ways. I found the book excellent, at times dense, and always a page turner.


Online Resources Family Vacation Ideas

ADHD Aware

Agile Mind

Always Connected: The New Digital Media Habits of Young Children

American Academy of Pediatrics — Digital Childhood: Electronic Media and Technology Use Among Infants, Toddlers, and Preschoolers

American Academy of Pediatrics: SafetyNet

American Center for Children and Media

An Educator with an Inquisitive Mind

Anty Foundation

Ask A Teacher Blog

Ask Granny

Ballooning Nest Eggs

BBC: Online Safety

Berkman Center for Internet and Society, Harvard University: Danah Boyd

Berkman Center’s Interactive collection

Best Kid Friendly Travel

Bridging Apps

Bright Hub

Building Blocks for a Healthy Future

Build Your Own Blog

Cable in the Classroom

Center on Media and Child Health at Children’s Hospital Boston, Harvard Medical School, and Harvard School of Public Health

Children Now

Children’s Technology Review: CTR 132 March 2011: Setting Up a Multi-Touch Preschool

College@Home: 100 Helpful Web Tools for Every Kind of Learner

Common Sense Media

Cute Parents

Digital Citizenship and Creative Content program

Disney: Parenting

DLTK’s Educational Activities: Alphabuddies Alphabet Section



Educational Technology and Mobile Learning

Educause: Tablets and iPads


Families Online Magazine

Families with Purpose

Family Online Safety Institute

Federal Communications Commission: Reboot — Parents’ Place

Financial Soccer

Focus on the Family

Foundations Recovery Network

FreeTech4Teachers: Seven Videos All Educators Should Watch

Free Things for English Teachers

Gaming With Children

Georgia Tech: CSI Mathematics: curriculum support information


Grand Magazine

Great Schools

Hatch: The Early Learning Experts

Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation: American Center for Children & Media: Kids & Media @ The New Millennium


Inkless Tales

International Society for Technology in Education

JobHero: Academic Career Resource Guide

Karenzo Media: The Virtual Classroom: Tools for Teaching Online Texting and Children


Kid Pointz

Kids Can Do, Inc.

Kids First



Kids Off the Couch



Kuta Software

Learn to Read Now

MacArthur Foundation: Digital Media & Learning

MedPage Today: AAP: Docs Advised to Learn About Kids’ Media Use

Michael’s House

MIT Media Lab: Affective Computing

MIT Media Lab: Sociable Media Group

My Body Belongs to Me


National Council of Teachers of Mathematics

National Institute for Early Childhood Professional Development

National Park Service: National Register Travel Itineraries

National Professional Resources, Inc.

National Wildlife Federation

Norton Online Family Reports


Parents’ Choice

PBS Parents

Pinnacle: Discover how a real family gets reunited around technology!


Preschool Express: Alphabet Activities

Public School Review



Reading A-Z

Reading Rockets

Save Kids’ TV


Singapore Tablet PC Study

Special Education


Study Island


Teaching Tolerance

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints: Family Activities

The National Academies INFocus: A Child-Safe Internet: Multifaceted Approach Needed to Protect Kids Online

The National Academies: Teachers and Students

The Pew Internet & American Life Project

The Use of Tablet PCs in Early Mathematics Education

UK Department of Education: Teaching and Learning

University of Illinois: Babysitting Links

University of Illinois: Education links

University of Washington: AccessCollege – Postsecondary Education and Students with Disabilities

Video Games Live

Walker Art Center: Educational Resources

Yahoo Kids: Parents/Kids Media Guide

YouTube EDU