In this day and age of technology, it is very probable that many parents are starting to reconsider how much time they allow their children to spend in front of a screen.
There are so many different and portable technology options, so with your children going from one to another, it may be hard to get a grasp on the actual amount of time is being spent using a device, or screen enjoying screen time.
The first thing you have to do is evaluate how long in total your child is spending with a screen, whether it be watching TV, playing video games or watching YouTube videos.
Once you determine how much total time they are spending with their tech, you can then move on to setting a lesser goal for them. Make sure the goal is attainable though, don’t do too much too fast.
TIPS TO HELP YOUR KIDS CUT DOWN ON SCREEN TIME
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SET SOLID TIME LIMITS
Prior to your child turning on their device, it is a good idea to set the ground rules and make sure they are very clear. Give your child a solid time limit and make sure they are aware that they will not be moving on to another form of technology once the time is up. Make it very clear that when the time is up, it is time to turn off the screens, no debate.
Make sure whatever time limit you set, that screen time is complete at least one hour before bedtime. This allows your child’s brain to settle down to make sure they get a good night’s sleep.
Egg or microwave timers work great for children to hear when the set time limit is up. If you have a hard time setting time limits and sticking to them, install an app on your child’s device that automatically shuts the device down when the time limit has been reached.
ENCOURAGE OTHER ACTIVITIES
Have other activities readily available for your children to participate in when the screen time is over. Make sure there are craft supplies, books, or even sports equipment for use outside available for them and easy to find.
SET THE EXAMPLE
If you want your children to stop staring at a screen for hours on end, and actually be able to hold a conversation or enjoy other activities, you are going to have to look at how much time you spend in front of a screen.
If your children are used to being in front a screen all the time, they are just going to think that this is normal behavior and not understand why it’s ok for you and not for them.
Children are little mirrors. Allow your children to see you getting active, reading or participating in family conversation without the phone in your hand.
There are many ways to limit your child’s screen time and ensure that they are participating in other activities. Your child will find other things that they enjoy doing and you will be able to pat yourself on the back for following through.
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