Psychologist to speak at VMS about putting tech in its place |

Psychologist to speak at VMS about putting tech in its place

Dr. Catherine Steiner-Adair will discuss tech's effects on child development and families when she speaks Tuesday at Vail Mountain School.
Vail Mountain School

If You Go

What: The Big Disconnect. Dr. Catherine Steiner-Adair discusses Protecting Childhood and Family Relationships in the Digital Age

When: 5:30 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 15

Where: Vail Mountain School

Cost: Free

Information: Dr. Catherine Steiner-Adair will signing copies of her book following the presentation. For information contact Dr. Kate Drescher at

VAIL — An award-winning author and clinical psychologist says it’s getting tougher for families to unplug from screens and devices and connect with each other.

Catherine Steiner-Adair will share some of the psychological fallout from our adaptation to technology and its effect on family life in a presentation at Vail Mountain School on Tuesday. Steiner-Adair is the author of the book, “The Big Disconnect: Protecting Childhood and Family Relationships in the Digital Age.”

“The focus of family has turned to the glow of the screen ­­­­— children constantly playing on devices, texting their friends while going online to do homework and parents working online or using social media around the clock,” Steiner-Adair said. “Everyday life is undergoing a massive transformation.”

Steiner-Adair will offer guidance for parents and educators who want to leverage the benefits of technology and reduce the risks it poses to child development.

‘Mixed Message’

Besides psychology, Steiner-Adair is a school consultant and author whose work focuses on things that impact the healthy development of children. When she’s not writing and speaking, she’s a research associate in the Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and an associate psychologist at McLean Hospital outside Boston.

Her book “The Big Disconnect” was among the Wall Street Journal’s Top 10 best non-fiction reads in 2013.

Kate Drescher, Vail Mountain School’s staff psychologist, organized Adair’s presentation in partnership with Vail Health to help parents of school-age children who are struggling with balancing screen time and family time.

“At school, children see technology as a powerful learning tool, but at home, more often than not, the same technology can cause tension in families trying to create healthy norms and limits for usage,” Drescher said. “This is a mixed message for most kids and often results in unhealthy power struggles.”

Vail Health also collaborated with the Eagle River Youth Coalition to host the Eat Chat Parent series dedicated to mental health.

“In these challenging times when we are striving to strike a balance in our use of technology and determine its effects on adults and children, it’s important to educate ourselves and each other,” Vail Health’s President and CEO Will Cook said.

Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 and

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