Today’s kids have been born into a world where technology is part of almost every aspect of their lives. This is why growing up, they are exposed to a vast array of gadgets and electronic devices – some of the things they can hardly live without. While using tablets, smartphones and similar devices can benefit children in several ways, too much time spent on screens can be detrimental to their development. Engaging in sedentary activities for too long can be a cause of obesity, behavior, sleep and school problems. Learn how to limit screen time for kids so that it doesn’t hinder their development with the help of these tips.
Set the right example
Young kids tend to gravitate toward the behavior and actions of their parents. Whether it’s your behavior towards food, reading or watching television, the things you do influence your child to follow suit. Set the right example when it comes to healthy electronic use. Be the one to teach them the right habits in using electronic devices. Make sure they don’t see that a huge chunk of your time is spent on watching Netflix or thumbing through your phone during your free time. Model how you wisely spend time both for the screens and other productive activities.
Make them understand how electronics affect them
As a parent, you have an important role to play in educating your little one and making them understand how unhealthy behaviors toward gadgets can affect them. Make them aware of the dangers of too much screen time. This way, they will understand your decisions and the rules you implement concerning their use of electronics.
Establish gadget-free zones around the house
There should be spots around your home where electronics, like mobile phones, laptops, and tablets, aren’t allowed. Examples are the dining table and their bedroom. Kids shouldn’t be tolerated when it comes to using gadgets while eating or before going to bed. Help them establish healthier routines by putting limits in terms of the areas in the house and the time where electronic use is okay.
Consider taking a digital detox for the entire family
Developing the habit of a digital detox as a family is a healthy step to prevent screen addiction in kids. One excellent idea is to establish at least one day a week where screens will not be allowed for both children and parents. For example, instead of spending your Sunday watching television at home to bond together, you can choose other exciting activities that get everyone moving. Go to the nearest park or beach. Or if you don’t feel like leaving home, consider playing outdoor games, get busy in the kitchen together, read books or play boardgames! There’s plenty of fun things to do as a family besides being glued to screens.
Spend more quality time with your kids
Let’s admit it. It’s a lot easier to turn on the TV or hand mobile phone to a restless kid than to actually deal with them when things are going insane! This is especially true for working parents who face the dilemma of having to split their time between their career and home. It’s really tough and there’s no arguing about it but it’s crucial that parents do their best to get involved in their child’s lives.
Spend more quality time with your little one. Make more time for bonding. Even if it’s as simple as sitting down with them while having snacks or asking about their day at school, what’s important is they feel that you are there for them and they don’t need to turn to anything else to be happy.
Encourage your child’s involvement in other activities
Kids are naturally restless. They easily get bored and always want something to keep them entertained. But instead of depending on gadgets, encourage them to try other activities that do not involve screens. Encourage them to join workshops or set up playdates.
Using electronic gadgets for entertainment is not entirely bad, but too much of it can be detrimental to a child’s health and development. Use these tips to help you limit screen time for kids.
Here at The Pillars Christian Learning Center, we make sure that kids are provided with educational activities that cater to their healthy growth and development.
Please feel free to give us a call for more information.