The screen time battle starts with toddlers and it only increases as their age increases. First, it is the YouTube channels, then it’s the games and then its social media, movies, TV shows and more games.
They stay tired, ignore school work, eat their meals in a hurry or sometimes not at all and experience eye strain and headaches but they cannot leave their devices. I am a mother of two.
When I spend too much time on social media or watch something for too long, I can feel the tiredness immediately. I see the same effects on my kids as well, but as they are young, they just keep going.
However, it is not good for them. It is really not. I know this screen time control thing is also becoming a cliché. People say that technology is a part of our life now and there is no need to cut it anymore. But clichés are clichés for a reason.
Yes, technology is essential, but so is balance and health. If we don’t keep a good balance, our health would deteriorate. Our kids have the biggest threat, who have the longest relationship with technology. So it is vital that we balance the digital time of our kids.
Have a look at these tips that can help you reduce your kids’ screen time effectively:
1. Say no to addictive apps
Generally, social media and gaming apps are the most addictive ones. The social media news feed keeps refreshing every second and there is always a new level of the games to win.
It never stops and gives a natural high that is why kids can’t leave them. So make sure you prioritize how many social media networks they can use and how many games they can play.
2. Read the hard copy of books
Encourage them to read hard copy books. E-reading also makes up a lot of screen time. Make some effort and take them to the bookstore.
Read with them when you can. I take up reading challenges with my elder daughter who isn’t really in the age of bedtime reading together. Spend money on books rather than kindles.
3. Device-free dinners
This rule is pretty popular and it is a very good one. It is not only a great way to cut device use but makes up for more quality time with your family. The whole family gets to talk with each other and actually see the food they are eating and enjoy it as well.
4. Fun time
Every day, take some time out to have fun. It can be after dinner, in the afternoon or whatever time is convenient. Put the devices away and do something else.
It can be anything – arts and crafts, yoga, board games, walk in the park, writing, or even cleaning. The key is to get them busy with their favorite hobbies – obviously the ones that don’t involve their devices.
As you try out these tips make sure:
- You stick to the rules and follow them through. It takes some time but they turn around if you stay firm on your plans.
- It is important that you also follow the rules as you using your phone while telling them not to, won’t really work.
- Use the FamilyTime Parental Monitoring App to make sure your rules work. Apps like FamilyTime provide a lot of help in this matter.
There are app blocker and screen time access controls with automated screen locks that help you make sure that there is no distraction. Moreover, it also has internet, device and location monitoring.
Ask them how they feel when they take a break and when they don’t. They would appreciate the difference.
Don’t take this cliché as just a cliché. Cutting screen time is good for children’s health, mental stability, social stability, and academic performance too.
These tips are helpful and I highly recommend FamilyTime Parental Monitoring App which makes it really easy. Keep them healthy and safe. Keep their digital time-limited!