A report from CHILDWISE, an independent market research agency specialising in children and young people, reveals exactly what children have been doing under lockdown and how it is affecting their lives – including how gaming and social media is helping them cope and how many hours they really spend online.
The CHILDWISE Monitor Report 2021 is a comprehensive annual report looking at five to 16-year-olds’ media consumption, purchasing and social habits as well as key behaviour.
“We interviewed almost 2,000 children and have detailed and independent data on children and their experience of the lockdown,” advises Simon Leggett, research director at CHILDWISE.
The amount of time children spend online has increased and is now an average of 3.8 hours a day, up from 3.4 last year. TikTok is dominating children’s social networking, helping them to cope with lockdown.
“Half of children say they are spending more time outdoors than usual or have discovered some new activity to do when stuck indoors. And despite not seeing their friends physically, the vast majority say their friendships have stayed strong in lockdown,” notes Leggett.
“Young people, especially those close to taking their GCSEs, are worried about falling behind with their schoolwork, and the long-term effect this will have on their education, but amongst older children, there is agreement that the reduced pressure on them actually resulted in them being happier not going to school. However, remote learning is a novelty that divides opinion, and the majority would rather not continue learning in this way, “ he reports.
“Half of young people experienced the disruption of parents having to work from home, being furloughed from work, or worse, losing their jobs altogether. As difficult as these situations are for children to deal with, most young people saw the positives, saying that they had spent more time with their family, and have really benefitted from this extra time with them in lockdown.”
“Social media and gaming have helped children deal with a tough year, creating a sense of togetherness when they are often online alone in their room and helping them stay in touch with friends. TikTok use increased among children under lockdown. Perhaps scrolling the app showed children how others were dealing with the challenges of 2020, providing light relief with memes and musicals and dance challenges creating a sense of togetherness with everybody learning and performing the exact same choreography,” he adds.
Children are spending more time watching video content and gaming with Roblox especially popular. Among Us, a multiplayer social deduction game, also enters the favourites chart.
“Social media and online games have helped children to maintain their friendships from afar, and some of the big brands that have thrived under lockdown are TikTok, Roblox and Among Us,” says Simon.
Findings of the report include:
Services and Content
Copyright Advanced Television Ltd © 2001–2021
Maintained by Elrond Limited