LIMIT SCREEN TIME FOR KIDS
In today’s screen-filled world it’s very difficult to limit screen time for kids. Today’s children know more about electronics than many adults. They have got a screen always at the ready. Today’s kids bask at the glow of TVs, tablets and mobile phones.
They are born in a digital era where parents are also found allowing toddlers to play with iPad, tablets or cellphones when they cry.
As the kids grow older, the screen gains so much power over their attention that they start whining for more screen time when they are told to shut the TV or when the iPad or cellphone is ripped out of their hands.
Often the children are found to get addicted so much to the screen that they face following common problems:
- Poor concentration: Children who are over exposed and spend several hours staring on screen find it hard to concentrate and remember things. Excessive screen time is also detrimental to a child’s thinking ability.
- Childhood obesity: This has become a common problem as children are more prone to sit and binge watch series, cartoons or films and play video games rather than going out and doing physical activity.
- Lack of energy: Excessive screen time results in energy loss. The kids’ brains are always at work, though they are not active physically, when they are exposed to screen for longer hours. At the end of the day, they are found to lack energy.
How to limit screen time for kids has become a matter of concern for most parents now. Here are 7 ways to limit screen time for kids:
- Be a role model: The first and foremost thing that a parent should try to do is to be a role model for their children. Kids learn from their parents. Parents should limit their screen time to set a good example to their kids.
2) Make the child understand: Parents should try to make a child understand why too much exposure to screen time is bad. The kids should be cautioned about the dangers of over exposure to screen time. Instead of scolding them or invoking fear in them, they should know the reasons why they are asked to limit screen time.
3) Make tech-free zones at home: At home some spaces such as the dining room and the bedroom should be made tech-free zones. The whole family should eat meals together away from TV or any other electronic gadgets.
Sleeping space should also be made gadget free. For a calm and peaceful sleep one needs to stay away from all kinds of electronic devices. Exposure to electronic gadgets on bed can result in disruptive sleep.
4) Family time: Parents should take care that they devote a considerable time everyday to their kids. They should spend time talking with each other, away from the digital world.
5) Encourage other activities: Parents should encourage children in activities such as reading, painting, making crafts, gardening or pursuing a hobby to distract them from technology.
6) Set viewing times: A routine should be made and viewing limits should be set for children. For example, children should not be allowed to watch screen beyond 2 hours a day. A special time of the day should be allotted for kids to watch TV or other electronic gadgets. Parents also need to have control over their screen so that they know what the kids are watching.
7) Binge day: Parents can select a special day of week such as the weekend where kids can binge watch.
Our lives have become so digital that it’s essential for parents to know where and how to draw a line so that their kids don’t delve deeper into the digital rabbit hole.