In modern days, technology has definitely made many aspects of our lives much easier. Although others not so much. This is especially true in our social lives, as we have become obsessed with displaying our lives on social media platforms and oftentimes are unable to put our phones down even when spending time with loved ones.
Unfortunately, this has spread to the children, who were born into this world of technology and do not know anything else. As a parent, who used to play outdoors as a child, the fact that your children spend too much time on their tablets, phones, or computers may grow in you a sense of frustration and guilt.
In this article, we will advise you on how to get your kids off the screen, without this resulting in tantrums.
Discuss This With Your Kids
With anything in life, if you want something from your child, be open and discuss it with them. Oftentimes, parents forget their child is a person and believe that a ‘because I said so’ will suffice. Imagine being in this position, at work, and your boss demands you to do something ‘because they said so’, how would that make you feel? The same goes for your child – do not allow your sense of authority to take the lead as this can lead them to feel confused and like they are not being treated fairly. When you sit down with children and help them understand the importance of not being on their phones for too long, they are more likely to listen to you and reduce their time on the screen on their own.
Have Rules in Place
Having rules at home is vital to establish boundaries with the children. This helps them grow into respectful adults. When it comes to technology, make sure that they know what they are allowed and not. For example, meals should be family time, and screen time during these times should not be permitted. Additionally, you can tell them they are allowed one hour a day, and that only after homework and house chores have been completed. Again, this will avoid confusion and provide the children with what is expected of them.
Find Them Other Activities
One of the reasons children spend so much time on the screen is because they genuinely think that there is nothing else to do. Like we said before, they were born into this booming technology world and do not know anything else. Support them in finding other activities to do – you can introduce them to books and puzzles, buy them toys they will enjoy painting and art activities. The folks at https://goalrilla.com/basketball-hoops/youth suggest that it is never too early to start basketball and this can be a great way to get the kids outdoors and off their screen. Growing their interests in other activities will be the main step towards significantly reducing screen time.
Those who do not have a sibling can struggle much more than a child who is constantly around other children. It can be easy for children to play together outside or other games without being on the screen, but when you have a single child, this can prove difficult, but not impossible. It is very important that children socialize and be with other children. You can do this easily by arranging a playdate with a friend from school or even by taking your child to the park and helping them make friends. If a child feels lonely, it can be difficult to motivate them to do anything other than playing games or watching tv.
Lead By Example
It may not come as a surprise that your children will copy everything they see. You should not try to expect behaviors from your children that you cannot display yourself and this applies to screen time too. This is as much of a problem for adults as it is for kids. There are a few things you can do in order to be a positive role model when it comes to reducing screen time. Firstly, learn to put the phone away when you are with your children and make sure your full attention is on them. This is particularly important when they try to talk to you. Secondly, if you want your kids to not use technology very often, make sure that you do not buy all the latest games and devices on demand. If they can only play with your phone, for example, or if there’s only one tv in the house that everyone has to share, this will encourage them to find other things to do.
Spending great amounts facing the screen is bad for your eyesight and it limits the development of creativity. It can be difficult for children to find activities that do not involve a phone or tablet – make sure you follow the tips above, to get your kids off the screen.