Amana Elementary


Friday, January 10, 2020

Children With Parents Who are Addicted to Their Cell Phones Affect Children’s Development -According to Scientist

(Excerpts from this Friday Note were taken from an article I read from Healthy Holistic Living. Full article can be found HERE)

Cycles and trends in education can be fascinating to follow. Trying to keep up can be trying to be sure! Thankfully one constant in education is the need for parents/families to keep active in their child’s education. I have long since had a theory about the impact on students (both academically and socially) when the adults in their lives are more focussed on a phone than on the child. This article helps articulate some of my own observations. Direct quotes from the article will be in italics and my own insight/comments will be in (parenthesis).

Be honest. How often do you scroll through social media, watch a cute video, read an article, check the weather, play games, or google something interesting?...It is popular to point fingers at Millennials and the younger generations for being technology addicts, but let’s be real, older generations, including our grandparents, are just the same. The only difference is that older Millennials and older still actively remember pre-smartphone or even pre-internet times...Have you ever wondered how technology has affected us? How does it affect our mental health and development? How about our children? They don’t know a world without smartphones, tablets, and laptops...Spending hours on end on the internet and using technology has a negative impact on the physical and mental health of adults. Children who are glued to the screen are no better off, and may even be worse off. A new study from the University of Michigan showed that screen time can have serious negative impacts on the health and development of children.

Turns out, a lot depends on the parents. Parents who spend a lot of time on their smartphones, laptop, or other technological devices, including TV, tend to have less meaningful and more interrupted relationships with their children. As a result, children may feel unimportant or frustrated. They may act out to get attention in some way (In my observations both as an educator and as a parent, this feeling of being frustrated and feeling unimportant is very observable. For this reason, I do insist staff, myself included, refrain from using cell phones in front of students, and if for some important reason I am on my phone when a student is needing my attention, I acknowledge him/her, state how the phone call/text is important, and immediately follow-up).

Other Health Effects of too much Screen Time (as determined by the scientists conducting this study)

  • Vision and eye health problems

  • Depression and other mental health problems

  • Brain developmental and learning difficulties (I would include delays is speech development)

  • Neck, back and other musculoskeletal problems as a result of poor posture

  • Attention deficit problems

  • Sleep problems

(among others)

Despite its negative impact, technology still has many benefits for us personally and for our world as well. We can’t completely ban technology and probably don’t want to. The question is how to use it safely and mindfully to protect our children and create a happy and healthy home and family.

How to Protect Yourself and your Family from the Negative Effects of Technology

  • Limit screen time for everyone (this really does mean for everyone, including us as adults)

  • No phones at the dinner table (I believe the middle school changed their policy on students having cell phones out at lunch which I am in favor of!)

  • Pick activities instead of movies (Movies are fun, sometimes it’s good to mix it up a bit with playing games, cards, walks etc. My family will play Kings Corners at dinner! One of my favorite card games)

  • Get outside (YES, even when it’s cold)

  • Put your phone on airplane mode even when you are not traveling (I had not thought of this one, but I like it)

  • (DO NOT TEXT AND DRIVE! That one was not added to the list, but thought I would slip it in)

(I LOVE technology. I love how I can set my fantasy football team. I love to scroll through Facebook and Twitter for some mindeless activity. I watch TV on my phone more than my TV. I also like to believe that when I’m in the presence of my own children and in the presence of students, they have my attention. My goal is to inspire us to model appropriate technology use. More than anything, I believe our students/your children are your highest priority. I only ask that we make sure we are modeling their needs as our highest priority. If you want to know if you are on your phone too much, just ask your kids. They will tell you. Enjoy the snow! Have a safe weekend)

We are Amana!

Ben Macumber, Principal

Upcoming Events

  • Monday, January 20 * No School
  • Saturday, February 1 * Family Fun Night
  • February 18 - 20 * PLP's
  • February 20 and 21st * No School
  • March 16 - 20 * Spring Break

Dropping Off Students

Students who do not ride the bus should not be dropped off prior to 7:45 AM. We prefer to have students dropped off by the doors next to the cafeteria. Students should go directly to the cafeteria. This is an attempt to keep our students safe and supervised. At no time should students PreK through 3rd grade be heading to their locker unless accompanied by an adult.

Do not leave your car unless you are parked in a designated parking spot. Buses need to be able to pull through both the loop in the front of the building by the flag pole and the area near the caferteria. If cars are parked in these areas the buses are not able to pull through and stay on schedule.

Thank you for your cooperation in keeping the drop off areas clear and safe when students are coming to school in the morning.

CCA Illness Policy

Please report your child's illness and please review the following guidelines about student illnesses:

    • Please notify the school if your child is going to be absent or tardy for any reason.
    • If the absence is due to an illness, please let us know your child’s symptoms (i.e. nausea, vomiting, fever, headache, sore throat, cough, rash, body aches, etc.).
    • If your child sees their healthcare provider for the illness, please let us know the outcome of that visit and if your child was diagnosed with a contagious disease. This will help us track illnesses, identify outbreaks, and allow us to notify the health department if a reportable communicable disease is identified.
    • If your child is ill and has a fever (100 or higher), they should not return to school until they are fever-free for 24 consecutive hours without the aid of fever-reducing medications.
    • If your child is vomiting, they should not return until they have not vomited for 24 hours.
    • If your child is being treated for a contagious bacterial infection (i.e strep throat), they should not return to school until 24 hours after antibiotics are started and until they are fever-free for 24 consecutive hours without the aid fever-reducing medications.

    The school nurse or office personnel will evaluate students who become ill at school. If it is determined that the child is too sick to remain in school, a parent/guardian will be called and asked to come and pick the child up.

    Thanks for your help in adhering to these guidelines that will help keep our school healthy and decrease the risks of spreading contagious diseases.

The BackPack Program

We participate in a program called The BackPack Program. This is a partnership between HACAP and the CCA Community Schools. The BackPack Program provides a food pack of kid-friendly, non-perishable food for children on the weekends and during school breaks. This is a FREE program, without cost to families. It is also kept completely confidential – only the counselor will be aware of participating families. If this would be helpful for you and your children, please contact Kelsey Koffend by phone at (319) 622-3255 or by email at There is a limited number of spots available, so it is important that you call or email to get your child’s name on the list.

Shoes That Fit

Shoes That Fit is a program that provides shoes to children in need. If your child needs new shoes this year and this program would be helpful to you, please contact Kelsey Koffend by phone at (319) 622-3255 or by email at

Help Support Our School

Please keep collecting, cutting and turning in….. Box Tops for Education and Pop Tabs for Ronald McDonald House and Register Tapes from the Big G dated 9/1/19 - 3/31/20!

Register Tapes for Education

We are excited to inform you that we are participating in an incredible program that allows us to earn FREE classroom equipment and supplies! Here’s How You Can Help! • Shop at Big G Foods, Marengo from September 1, 2019 - March 31, 2020 • Save your receipts and send them to school with your child • Your receipts will earn us points for free classroom equipment, donated by the store!

Lunch accounts and other payments.


We appreciate volunteers, please go this volunteer link for more information.

Digital Backpack

Your connection to CCA and community events, camps, fundraisers and more.

Non-discrimination Statement

It is the policy of the Clear Creek Amana Community School District not to discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, religion, creed, age (for employment), marital status (for programs), sexual orientation, gender identity and socioeconomic status (for programs) in its educational programs and its employment practices. There is a grievance procedure for processing complaints of discrimination. If you have questions or a grievance related to this policy please contact the district’s Equity Coordinator, Lori Robertson, 327 S. Augusta Avenue, Oxford, IA 52322, 319-828-4510.