In our technology driven world, limiting screen time for kids and teenagers and creating healthy boundaries around screen time is important.
Do you have the same screen time battle with your kids every single day? I’m hearing stories from parents about kids sneaking their phones into their bedrooms throughout the night and not sleeping or having meltdowns when their phones or iPad are being taken from them. The stress this causes can be overwhelming, especially if you are constantly worried about where your children’s devices are. If this all sounds familiar, you are not alone.
We live in a technology driven world and over the last year or so many of us have relaxed screen time boundaries with our children due to being in lockdown and home schooling. Slowly as things get back to normal, we are finding the kids are more attached to their devices now more than ever so the struggle is real. Kids and teens don’t realise they need healthy boundaries and structure around their devices. Kids don’t have the self-control and discipline when it comes to technology, however through positive reinforcement, they need to learn there are positives to putting their devices away.
Here are 5 strategies for limiting tech time for kids and teens.
1. Establish Clear Boundaries
Keeping it age appropriate, explain the rules and boundaries around the use of devices. You could set boundaries on where they are allowed to use their devices, how many hours per day they have allocated on devices for social time ( you can set screen time limits in phone settings), the type of games or social media they are allowed to view.You can also review home wifi settings and program your wifi to turn off at a certain time.
2. Invest in a lockable charging station
Take the stress away from yourself and invest in a lockable charging station like the Inchargebox. This ingenious concept charges your devices while locking them safely away, allowing you and especially the kids to have some ‘screen free’ time. The Inchargebox charges up to 6 devices at one time so you can feel rested knowing your kids are getting a good night’s sleep and not sneaking their devices during the night.
Take the stress off yourself from wondering if your kids are sneaking their devices and playing on them. Feel rested knowing your kids are sound asleep without the temptation of scrolling on social media all night.
3. ENCOURAGE PHYSICAL ACTIVITY
The increased use of devices has meant that more kids and teens are choosing to play video games or scroll through social media rather than getting outside and being active. Encourage your kids to get active, join a sports team, play a game in the backyard or even just going for a walk – parents can get involved in physical active as well and make it a family affair!
4. REMOVE SCREENS FROM BEDROOMS
This is a big one. Lack of sleep can cause mental and physical exhaustion, emotionally unstable behaviour and can affect academic performance at school. Making sleep time a priority is important for all ages, especially kids and teens. Encourage winding down by reading a book or drawing, anything gentle and calming, which doesn’t involve screens.
5. CREATE NEW FAMILY ROUTINES
Limiting tech time is important for us as parents too. There is nothing worse than kids watching their parents mindlessly scrolling through their phones when they’re not allowed their devices. Creating new routines and bringing back family time with small changes such as eating dinner together (no devices at all at the dinner table) as a family or going for family walks, everyone turning their devices off at the same time each evening, watching a family movie together, dusting off the board games and having games nights – the possibilities are endless!