*This is a collaborative post*
With many of our kids currently spending time away from school due to the Corona virus pandemic, many of us are finding that we’re struggling to find ways to keep them occupied all day every day. Usually, their routines are pretty packed with different tasks and activities. They get up in the morning, get ready, get dropped off at school. Then they spend time in lessons and playing with their friends – learning everything they need to know and bonding with others their own age. They might attend after school clubs. We might pick them up and take them to an activity they like to attend outside of school. We cook them their evening meals and by the time this is all over, they’re ready for bed to rest up for the next day ahead. On the weekends, we usually go places – visiting family friends and extended family members. Many of these things are no longer possible, as we need to stay home to slow the spread of the virus. So, it’s not all too surprising that many of us are feeling lost and don’t know how to entertain our kids. Now, many parents will note that their little ones are spending much more time staring at screens of some sort or another while they spend time indoors. This could be smartphones, tablets, laptops, computers, or anything else. But is screen time good for kids or bad? And how can you manage it to ensure they’re safe and benefiting as much as possible? Let’s take a moment to find out!
Benefits of Screen Time
Screen time can come hand in hand with a number of perks. The internet can be used for education (there are plenty of learning resources out there), entertainment (there are plenty of kids TV shows, films and games out there) and communication (your little ones can use devices to keep in touch with your extended family and friends).
Cons of Screen Time
Spending way too much time online can hinder your child’s progress in other areas of life. They might not engage with others as well, or they might simply zone out rather than thinking productively or creatively. You don’t want your child to become dependent on the screen for everything. They should have other interests and hobbies too!
Managing Screen Time
Here are just a few tips and tricks that will help you to ensure that your little ones’ screen time is well monitored!
Safety should be a priority when monitoring your children’s online behaviour. While the internet can be filled with many wonderful things, unfortunately, there are plenty of things your child shouldn’t be exposed to out there too. So, it falls onto your hands to ensure their safety. First, add a child filter onto your home internet. This will block unwanted content that may not be age-appropriate, or may be violent or otherwise problematic. You can also make use of monitoring software to ensure your child isn’t using their phone for anything they shouldn’t be, or to talk to anyone they shouldn’t be. You can click here to find out how to monitor iphone effectively.
Set Daily Limits
You may want to put a limit on your children’s screen time each day so that they can focus some time on other areas – perhaps reading, arts and crafts, or other productive things your kids could be doing. There are various apps out there that put a timer on screen use and can shut devices off once this limit has been reached. Alternatively, you can track screen time yourself.
Set a Good Example
So many adults spend half their time glued to their phone screens or laptops during their free time. If you don’t want your children to act in this way, you shouldn’t behave in this way yourself. Set a good example and minimise your own screen time too!
Screen time has been a hot topic for years now, since more and more people started getting televisions, laptops, computers and other devices in their own homes. When it comes down to it, screen time can be great for your kids in many ways. But it’s up to you to monitor and set limits on use so that your child can benefit from the best parts of tech! Hopefully, the above advice will help you to achieve this!