Calling All Parents: What do you know about kids and cell phones?

By: Staff

4 Min Quiz

Image: refer to hsw

About This Quiz

Kids are getting cell phones at younger and younger ages these days. But how exactly do they use them? And is cell phone use by kids even safe? See how much you know about cell phones and kids by taking this quiz.

What percentage of kids ages 12 to 17 have a cell phone?

According to the Pew Internet & American Life Project, 75 percent of kids 12 to 17 have cell phones. In 2004, less than half of that age group owned them.

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In which age group has cell phone ownership increased most dramatically?

A Mediamark survey says that as of 2009, cell phone ownership skyrocketed more than 80 percent among 10- to 11-year-olds.

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Who are 6- to 11-year-olds calling the most?

Children in the 6- to 11-year-old age group most often use their cell phones to call their parents, according to ABC News. Once they hit the teen years, their friends become No. 1.

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What are kids normally doing on their cell phones?

Talking on your cell is <i>so </i>yesterday! Today most kids use their cells to text, surf the Web, play with ring tones, take pictures and more.

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How many texts does the average teen send per day?

According to the Pew Internet & Family Life Project, the average teen sends 50 text messages per day. Girls text more than boys; girls average 80 per day, while boys average 30.

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What is the main reason kids text?

According to the Pew study mentioned in the previous question, 96 percent of teens say they text just to say hi and chat.

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What is one of the major health concerns regarding cell phone usage among kids?

Although some studies show a link between brain cancer in kids and cell phone usage, the FDA, American Cancer Society and other researchers say there's no hard data proving this link. However, most studies are only a few years old, so many experts agree we won't know anything definitive for a while.

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Another concern regarding kids and cell phones is "sexting." What is that?

Sexting is a term used to describe the sending of sexually explicit photos or messages between mobile devices. The word was derived by combining "sex" with "texting."

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Experts recommend putting an "ICE" number in kids' cell phone address books. What's ICE?

ICE stands for "In Case of Emergency," and the number associated with it should be the one that emergency personnel would contact if something happened to your child and he couldn't call you himself.

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About what percentage of teens text while driving?

Texting while driving is extremely dangerous -- it's considered as bad as, or worse than, driving drunk, according to the Christian Science Monitor. And even though surveys show people of all age groups overwhelmingly believe texting while driving is dangerous and shouldn't be done, a whopping 73 percent of teens admit to texting while driving.

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Under what type of cell phone plan are most teens covered?

According to the Pew Internet & Family Life Project, most teens -- 69 percent -- are covered under a family plan, where minutes and messages are pooled among family members. Eighteen percent are covered under a prepaid plan, while just 10 percent have their own, individual contracts.

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What is the major determining factor in the type of cell phone plan a child will have?

Household income has the biggest impact on the type of cell phone plan a kid will have, according to the Pew Internet & Family Life Project. Teens in lower-income households (less than $50,000/year) are more likely to have prepaid or individual plans, while those in higher-income households are more likely to be covered by a family plan.

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What type of texting plan do most teens have?

According to the Pew study mentioned in the previous question, the vast majority of teen cell phone users (75 percent) have an unlimited texting plan.

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What specific teen demographic is most likely to have unlimited texting?

Girls ages 14 to 17 are most likely to have unlimited texting, as studies show 86 percent of them do.

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There are specially designed cell phones for young users. What built-in parental features do these typically have?

Cell phones designed for pre-teens are stripped down versions of the typical cell phone, and feature parental controls regarding who can call and be called, the number of minutes and text messages available, and whether or not the Internet can be accessed.

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What are two of the top rules of cell phone etiquette that your child should learn?

There are various rules for cell phone etiquette, and every family establishes its own. But two of the more popular ones are no cell phones at the dinner table, and no talking on your phone right next to someone else.

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Texting can actually improve your health. How?

There are certain programs available that send personalized health-related texts -- reminding you to take your medicine, for example, or encouraging you not to smoke.

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What percentage of teens sleep with their cell phones on or near the bed?

The vast majority of teens (86 percent) take their phones to bed with them, with the older teens more likely to do this than the younger teens, according to the Pew Internet & Family Life Project.

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Why do teens sleep with their cell phones on?

There are numerous reasons why teens take their phones to bed with them, but the main reasons are to stay connected and to use the phone's clock and alarm clock function.

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Who gets most annoyed when a cell phone call or text interrupts them?

Interestingly, boys ages 12 to 17 get most annoyed when their cell phone interrupts them at a task, according to the Pew Internet & Family Life Project. And overall, parents are less annoyed by interruptions than all teens.

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