Good Screen Time

This year set a new precedent for screen time. Many kids spent their entire school day on a screen. That doesn’t include all of the time they spent on screens unwinding after their school day was done. It’s a pretty safe bet to assume that we’ll never go back to being completely screen-free again. And if that’s the case, we may as well make the most of it. Here are some ways to make your kids’ time on their screens more productive.

Set Limits

Limiting the amount of screen time your children get each day will ensure that the rest of their day is (probably) being filled with activities that are a bit more innocuous. When they’re only allowed a certain amount, they’re also more likely to be thoughtful about how they use their screen time.

Pay Attention

Monitor what they are using their screens for. Only allow screen time for specific activities, but not all need to be academic. This allows you to set limits while also giving them the freedom to do some screen-based activities they enjoy. Perhaps you are okay with your child playing certain video games, for example, but not others. Maybe there are some TV shows that you watch as a family, or that your child likes to watch, but others that you’d feel more comfortable taking off the table.

You can also monitor the type of screen time your child is getting by assessing how she engages with it. Screen time can be highly interactive or it can be completely passive. It is best to limit your child’s passive engagement and make sure she is spending a majority of her screen time interacting or creating. This rule of thumb applies to screen time that is both academic and for leisure.

Incentivize Screen Time

There’s nothing wrong with using screen time as a reward. If your child is the type who would feel motivated by incentivized screen time, identify tasks that he needs to accomplish before screen time begins. It doesn’t necessarily matter whether these tasks are academic, household chores, or something else entirely. What’s more important is that you make sure to follow through. The moment you give in and allow the screen time to happen before your child ahs finished what you asked him to, it will become that much harder for you to associate screen time with rewards in the future.

Use it To Bond

Finally, screen time is a great way for you to develop your relationship with your kids. They don’t want to play a family board game because they’d rather watch their TV show or play their video games? Then join in! Watch their show with them, play their game with them, and try to see what they love about it so much. You will not only bond by getting to know their interests even better, but this new knowledge may even give you some ideas for introducing resources or activities, whether on the screen or not, that offer a more productive use of their time.

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Get updates to new articles, promotions and more!