Screen time for kids is one of the most debated topics these days. While some speak in its favor owing to the convenience factor that digital gadgets bring along, some speak against handing over the screens to children due to the health impact it can pose. Well, at The Navyandhra School, one of the Top Schools in Sector 49, we believe the key lies in maintaining a balance!
After all, digital gadgets are no longer a mode of mere entertainment anymore. They are being used for education, socializing, skill development, and much more. Having said that, we understand that too much exposure leads to technology addiction, which certainly isn’t good. So, what can be done? As mentioned before, the solution lies in finding the correct balance. You need to factor in your child’s mental framework and requirements and accordingly decide on the screen time to be allowed. However, while doing that, you must stick to some Dos and Don’ts as well. Today, in this article below, we have listed some of the basic dos and don’ts that you must keep in mind when trying to aptly manage your children’s screen time. Read on.
The “Dos” to Remember
- Talk to your child about their screen time. Find out what they are doing on their device and why they are using it. It would be easier to decipher a time limit if you knew what they were doing.
- All children need a schedule for everything they do, and screen time is no different. Create a set schedule for when they may use screens and for how long so that they know when it is okay to use them. You can do this by considering the previous point.
- Encourage other activities as an alternative to screens, such as reading books, playing outside, and other extracurricular activities. However, only suggestions won’t help. See to it that they do it without forcing it. You can take them for a fun stroll outside, take them along for an evening walk, or send them to play with friends in the park. We guarantee they’ll stay away from screens of their own volition once they start deriving pleasure from these.
- Try to find common activities that you may partake in at home. It will help you keep your kids away from digital screens while strengthening your relationship with them. Examples include playing sports together or asking them to help you out with grocery shopping. Other bonding activities include reading them stories and/or drawing with them.
- Be mindful of what your kids watch on TV and online; it impacts their behavior. Ensure set guidelines for appropriate content for children of different ages, like no violent content for younger children, etc.
- Maintain the time they go to bed and that they have the proper nutrition. You may not know this, but screens cause the brain to get tired, even if limits are maintained. Thus, if your children don’t get sufficient rest and proper nutrition, they’ll feel weak and remain tired throughout the day.
- Install parental control software on their PCs and phones. These software not only help you regulate and restrict the internet usage of your kids but also cater to set time limits as well.
- Create a family Tech-Plan in which you set time limits for each family member and stick to them.
Do Not Miss the “Don’ts”
- Don’t give into your child’s requests for more screen time than you have agreed upon in the first place. This will only lead to more arguments in the future about how much screen time they should be getting.
- Don’t let screen time become the primary entertainment for children. They’ll get detached from the real world, hampering their social growth. In time, they may develop physical and mental complications such as Obesity, Diabetes, Depression, etc.
- Don’t shout or spank your kids about screen time issues. Even if they throw tantrums, yell, or lash out, stay calm and impose your will without being too forceful. They’ll realize after a while that you are asking them to do the right thing for their own good.
- Don’t use screen time as a reward for good behavior. Instead, try to provide a tangible reward such as their favorite meal during dinner, a small chocolate, etc. Know that since they are tangible, they carry a lot more weight.
Help Your Kids to Stay Connected to the Real World
We at The Navyandhra School, ranked among the Top Schools in Sector 49, firmly believe that exposure to the real world is more beneficial to a child than staring at a screen all day. However, this definitely doesn’t mean you should cut off their screen time completely and forever. You need to understand that this is a 21st-century world, and letting children have the necessary screen time is rather essential to help them be a part of the modern age. The only thing you need to focus on is maintaining a balance, and that can be easily done by allowing screen time in moderation.