Tips to Reduce Screen Time for Your Kids5 minute
What do you do to keep your kids busy? Do you encourage playtime or simply hand them your mobile phone? We know that the phone idea is the easiest one. But this is what makes it very hard to reduce screen time for your kids.
Nearly half of the children above 8 years of age have their own tablets and laptops. Besides, these children are spending more than 2.25 hours a day on screen. This is what experts have figured out and there is no joke that this is causing serious effects on children’s bodies.
How many of you are familiar that more screen time can limit their ‘Means of Exploration and learn’? This can easily distract them from non-electronic activities that can otherwise encourage creativity and imagination.
If you ask us, “Should I limit Screen time for kids?”- Our answer would be, YES, It’s the necessity of the time.
How to reduce screen time? We have made a list of ways to limit screen time for your children.
So, without any further ado, let’s have a look at how you can reduce screen time for the safety of your kids.
1. Set screen time on your gadgets
Your kids might be advanced and know how smartphones and laptops work. However, you still need to take precautions to prevent all the detrimental impacts. Your device has all the hidden features to help you out, including ‘screen time lock’.
How do I set screen time limit on iPhone?
How to bypass screen limit on Netflix and other apps?
How to limit screen time on Samsung?
Do you have such questions? Here are a few ways to help you set your screen time:
- Reduce Screen time on iPhone- Go to the settings, there you will find an option ‘Screen time’. Tap on it, you can select a variety of settings. For instance, on Downtime, you can select all the apps that you can shut down at the set time. Apart from that, you can set app limits (based on categories) and set an access time for all the apps.
- For Android- Android smartphones have a great option in the setting ‘Digital Wellbeing and Parental controls’. In this, you can set all the limitations to prevent more screen time for your kid. Moreover, you will be highly impressed by all the options you will come across.
- Limit screen time on Macbook and iPad- Simply navigate Apple Menu and select System Preferences. On the window, click on-screen time and there you will find options such as app usage, notifications, and pickups. See what suits best for your kids and adjust the timings.
2. Apps to limit screen time.
Yes! You read it right. There are apps that reduce screen time. You can download it on your smartphones and desktop to cut down screen time for your kids. What exactly do these apps do? Well! To be precise, these apps often block a few apps and websites that can be distracting for your babies.
Go to Google and search for terms like:
- Limit screen time app iPhone,
- Limit screen time app Android,
- How to set screen time limit iPhone and Android.
If you still don’t find anything, you can reduce screen time using apps like ScreenTime, Freedom. Famisafe, ZenScreen, and more. Each app comes with its own unique functions but one thing is sure the best- limit screen time.
3. Children imitating adults
Have you ever noticed your child copying you? From facial expressions to body language and all the activities you do, kids get better at imitating with age. Therefore, this can be one of the biggest reasons why your children spend too much time on screen.
Should parents limit screen time? The answer is Yes. Because, as long as you are addicted to your phones and laptops, they will feel the need to spend more time looking at screens.
To bring a stop to this, all you need to do is spend more quality time with your children and inculcate the habit of less screen time. The best way to do that is “pretend play”. What is pretend play? It is a simple activity in which you teach your children good habits and behavior by mimicking you.
How can you do that?
- Educate them about new things- board games,
- Read/tell them a story
- Observe, listen, and explain
- Encourage art and talent
- Teach them values like how to take care of a doll or how to keep their rooms clean.
4. Growing Up digital?
If you pay attention, you will notice that as your child grows older, they start spending more time on screen. Be it on smartphones, video games, or television. In a survey by Common Sense Media, experts found out that children above 8 years of age spend around 4 hours every day looking at screens. Ideally, how much screen time should one allow for 6 year olds and below? It must be no more than 1 hour.
You might be one of those parents who use screens as an escape from child-ish problems. For instance, you may consider screen time as an extra curriculum activity for your baby. You need to encourage off-screen activities for your child like board games, sports, and other creative activities.
5. Try explaining
Why are you limiting screen time? These are the questions that often come to your kid’s mind but they hesitate to ask you straightaway. This is where you, as a parent, need to take a step ahead and explain to them the reason behind your restrictions.
These are a few of the best strategies to reduce screen time. Remember, your child is not a fool, kids notice everything and examine the whole situation in their head. As a parent, you need to observe their behavior, listen to them, and explain why more screen time is bad for their health,
Obviously, you are not going to explain that with deep scientific facts. However, you know how to maintain the balance.
6. Create a screen-free environment
How many televisions do you have at your home? We can understand, having a gigantic television is your status symbol and you enjoy watching your shows and movies on the big screen. But, do you know how harmful it is for your children?
You need to create a screen-free environment at your house so that your children can concentrate better on other activities. Don’t know how to do that? Follow these tips:
- Challenge lego activities
- Look for competitions (writing, poetry, singing, dancing, and art)
- Engage them in household chores (cleaning and cooking)
- Set up treasure hunts
- Ask them for suggestions (fashion, food menu, or anything)
- Encourage craft activities
Now, that we have some ideas to ‘How to reduce screen time?’, we must know the care of our kid’s eyes. ‘How to take care of our children’s eyes?’. Read on to find out some awesome tricks.
Here are some tips to take care of kid’s eyes
How to reduce screen time during quarantine? Well, we all know, no matter how much we try, all the online classes, tuitions, and even sports are continuing digitally. It is hard to cut down your kid’s screen time.
However, what you can do is take care of their eyes. Down there is the answer to your ‘How?’.
Have a good diet
We all know the significance of a good diet in child development. A healthy diet is not only good for physical development but also helps with the development of the mind. Serve them more green-leafy veggies, Vitamin-A-rich food like carrots and eggs, berries, fruits, and nuts. Moreover, if you are a non-vegetarian, you MUST include fish and meat which is the best for your child’s visionary health.
Go out and play
In this time of social distancing, it is hard to take your kids out and play. However, it does not mean you must keep them inside all the time. These outdoor plays encourage concentration, sharpness, and better eye-care. So, if not the park, take them to the street or terrace and let them play.
Regular eye checkup
This one is maybe something you are already following but just to remind you, do take your kid to an eye checkup every year. Especially if they are wearing specs at a small age. Your child’s ophthalmologist (Eye Doctor) can understand the health better and suggest ways for improvement.
The ‘20-20-60’ Rule
What is this ‘20-20-60’ rule? Your kid is probably spending straight 4-5 hours a day in online classes. It’s your responsibility to encourage consistent rest for their eyes. So, this is where the 20-20-60 rule comes in.
Tell your kid to stop looking at the screen and:
- After every 20 minutes
- Look at an object at a distance of 20 feet
- For 60 seconds.
This frequent exercise prevents ‘ciliary muscle spasm’ that relaxes human eye muscles. In fact, this is the exercise even adults can perform. It’s really good for your eye health.
Use an appropriate screen guard
Here comes an investment point. If it is necessary for your child to sit in front of the screen for hours, you must spend a little to purchase an effective screen guard. There are plenty of options available in the market. Go for the most suitable one and protect your kid’s eyes.
No matter how hard you try, your kids can’t refuse to look at the screen. Which is why these super-helpful tips and tricks will help protect your children’s eyes.
So, limit screen time before bed, during play, while watching TV, and even during online studies. Tell us which idea to reduce screentime for your kids did you like the best? Leave a comment below.