We are in a time where we are surrounded by screens and have access to different screens almost all day long. Children are exposed to screens just as much as adults, if not more, and disconnecting can be difficult. Telling your kids they cannot play a video game, watch a movie, or be on the computer might result in tantrums, back talk, or even having them sneak the screentime in without you knowing. So how can we be more practical about screen time and make it work for us?
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While I am fully on board with reducing screen times to encourage:
- More social interaction and communication
- Promote exploration of other toys and activities
- Foster screentime management and independence
I also think it is important to see that screen time can be a useful tool. Think about how many times, as a parent, you might need 30 minutes to cook or shower. There might be times when you need a few minutes to finish working or make a phone call. There have probably been countless times where you need some time, but also need to make sure your kids are safe.
Useful Tips to Make Screentime Work For Us
- Create a schedule for screentime management.
- Allow your child to have access to screen time when you need time to cook dinner, shower, work, or take a call.
- Be mindful of the schedule and how much time they will have screentime.
- Take school activities for homework, projects, or studying into consideration when creating the schedule and monitoring the time.
- Use a timer to help indicate when the screentime is up or look for apps that can assist with this. Also, try to incorporate reminders or warnings with the timer. This can make the transition away from screentime much easier. Imagine you are watching your favorite show and it’s getting to a really good part, and you are glued. If someone comes by and shuts off the TV, most likely, you won’t be too happy. Providing warnings can help prepare to disconnect from any current activity.
- Teach and promote independence for screentime management. Have your child look at the schedule, set the timer if they are able to, and manage their time.
If you find that screentime continues to be a concern, and you’d like more help contact us today.
Disclaimer: The information and content in this blog and any links and materials are not intended to be and should not be construed or substituted as medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician and or other qualified healthcare professionals with any questions you may have.