- DR. LAURA MARKHAM
This Pandemic has changed everything. Many parents were forced to work from home, with all schools closed and daily virtual classes going on for hours, now, more than ever it is important to find ways to keep our kids engaged in activities that will keep them away from the gadgets. Though we do live in a digital age, you may be wondering if your kids spend too much time on screens. Should you limit them in any way, or should you embrace the age of technology?There’s no hard and fast rule about how much time kids should spend on screens. And if you have a day when your kids spend a lot of time on screens, it doesn’t mean that you’ve failed as a parent.Why Should You Limit Screen Time for Your Kids?
Technology is going to be a part of your child’s life as our world becomes more dependent on it. Now they spend few hours daily doing their regular school. The main thing is to make sure that your child is given the opportunity to spend time doing other life-enriching things as well after their virtual lessons are done for the day.
Not everyone agrees on a certain number of hours that a child should spend playing video games or watching TV, but most experts agree that unlimited screen time can lead to several issues.
Some of these issues include:
● Sleep challenges
● Behavioral issues
● Emotional issues
● Developmental delays
Many parents anecdotally report that kids that spend a lot of time on screens become cranky and difficult to manage. In some cases, they’re more likely to fight with siblings or dissolve into tantrums.
Some experts believe that one of the biggest issues with screen time is the amount of time spent on devices. While they could be doing things like learning, exercising, or developing new skills, they’re planted in front of a device instead.
Other studies have shown that screen time - especially for younger children - can lead to developmental delays such as delayed language skills.
Many who study the effects of screens for kids also say that the quality of the screen time matters. If your child is watching high-quality educational TV or interacting with educational games, the time spent can have positive returns.
“Whether you are a parent or not, carving out time to turn off your devices, to disconnect from the wired world and engage with the real people who are all around you, is one of the best gifts you can give yourself and the people you love.”
- ALAN BROWN
Here are few ideas on how to keep everyone away form the screens :
Spend time outside
Arts and Crafts Time
Have real conversations with the kiddos
Go out Shopping, maybe on some Long walks, at the Farmers market
Encourage your children to write their own stories
Cooking and chores Time
Consider taking Martial Arts Classes! Taekwondo is the perfect discipline to practice with your children. Classes are so much fun. Families that kick together stick together.
Do what works best for your family.
Our kids spend too much time already in front of the screens. We have to try our best to make sure when they are finished with the virtual learning they spend more time doing other things. You will be amazed at the ingenuity of your children. In addition, as the family spends more time together and less time on screens, you will see your bonds growing stronger. Finally, understand that technology is nearly inescapable these days. Many jobs depend on technology in order to run. Your kids should be learning how to use technology and you shouldn’t feel guilty for them developing these skills as well. The takeaway is to offset their screen time with other things that are important for their growth.
Be patient with yourself and your kids during this transition and reap the rewards!
E-book coming soon.