Most kids spend entirely too much time on screens. From television to laptops, tablets, and cell phones kids seem to be glued to a screen from the moment they wake up to the time they fall asleep. A concerning issue for many parents.
Helping your child reduce screen time can help them fight off lifelong health issues from obesity and heart disease to eye strain and anxiety. However, getting kids to put down the devices can be the hard part. Here are some simple ways you can reduce your child screen time.
Make a no screen at meal times rule
While mealtimes are relatively short they are a great time to connect with the family and the perfect time to ban screens so that everyone can connect without the distractions of devices. Set an example by putting your devices with your children’s devices in a basket on the counter while the family eats together.
Recently, we have enabled this little rule and it has done wonders for our family. Not only do we enjoy connecting with our kids during this time, we also laugh together. This month our oldest turns 13 and it just reminds us how quickly the years pass by. I don’t want our kids to grow up and leave home without us ever really knowing who they are. Putting down our phones during meal time is just one way to make sure we stay connected.
Encourage your child’s sports and hobbies
Yes, they may find themselves bored from time to time, but boredom is not always a bad thing for kids. In fact being bored once in a while will help them find their creative side.
If your child does not have an outside interest now is the perfect time to encourage them to get out and give a few things a try. Several of my kids love playing sports. And I love them to play because sports also teach them teamwork, perseverance and discipline.
If your child does not already have a hobby, summer is a great time to find one. Take the time to help your child find a summer job or create a business that they can spend the summer building. ETSY shops are the perfect start for the crafty child to build a business. You can even encourage your child to bring back the days of kids mowing lawns for extra money.
Help them find places to volunteer
The local animal shelters can always benefit from volunteers that will love on abandoned animals. There are always elderly in nursing homes that could benefit from being read to and the soup kitchen floors always need swept. This is a great way to show your child how to make a difference by serving others and it makes a great one on one activity that you can do with your child.
During summertime screen-time often takes a turn for the worse when kids are not kept busy with school. Addiction is a very real thing and this technology-driven generation is definitely fighting the addiction with their screens. So finding them some great alternatives to help keep them occupied and away from their screens will only help set a good foundation for them and help them avoid a lifetime of ailments.
Want to know more about how to set up boundaries for screen time? I highly recommend Screen Sense! Through this video presentation, you will help you identify and implement a system to help end the fight over screen time. You will learn what 10 things will keep you from finding the right balance of screen time in your home. The “mindset shift” that will keep your kids away from their screens without nagging. And so much more for just $17!!
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