Worried about how much time your kids spend on their video games and watching TV and fear they might be getting addicted? It can be hard to make sure your kids aren’t becoming obsessed but don’t feel left out either.
There are many pros as to why social media and technology is good for your kids including being able to keep in touch with them via mobile phones, the use of computers to do research for their homework, and to chat to friends in the holidays.
There are just as many disadvantages too though, including sleep deprivation, strain injuries, bad fitness, and poor eyesight, apart from the fact that them being entranced in a game for hours drives you up the wall.
So here are 9 tips on how to reduce your kids screen time…
- Don’t let your kids have TV’s and games in their rooms so that once they go up to their room for bed time, they have to switch off for the evening.
- Lead by example and try to cut back on your own use of social media and make more effort to spend time with your kids.
- You can set time limits on computers and TV so once their time is up it’s up. You could also limit use to weekends or certain days only too.
- Set up rules so that your kids have to do chores to earn time on their computers. This helps with getting them to help out around the house too!
- Encourage the kids to play outside with their friends or set up play dates if they’re younger instead of allowing them to play on games in their free time.
- Try and get the kids to take up a hobby they’re passionate about. If they really love it they’ll want to spend their free time persuing it.
- When you’re out shopping, don’t let the little ones play on phones to keep them amused. Instead try to actively involve them in the task and ask them what they think of the clothes you’re looking at, or get them to help you fill the trolley.
- Have meals without the TV on and ban phones from the table. This will encourage conversation and bonding.
- Encourage kids to play with their toys and sit down and play with them too. You could also encourage book reading, and could make it a fun activity to go to the book shop or library and choose books to read.
If you really want to reduce your child’s screen time, consistency really is key. Kids are sure to kick up a fuss if you go on a full on technology ban, and a good balance of both social and technological time in a solid routine is the best way to go.
Also leading by example and cutting down on your own screen time will also have a positive impact on your kids as they will hopefully imitate your practices.