So we’re talking about screen time for kids and our idea is to empower you such that no matter what comes from the environment, you can handle it and you can make your child, or you can reduce the screen time for kids.
What could you as a parent do with children such that you could take them off the grip of the screen time or you could nullify the impact of screen time for kids and also prevent children from going into screen addiction.
We will discuss the main 4 reasons for increasing screen time for kids and along with the reasons we will also suggest how you can reduce the impact of screen time for kids.
Boredom is the whole root cause of all the increasing screen time for kids. Most people would say that my child is getting bored and that’s why I’m giving them a tab or a phone because they love seeing videos, they love seeing rhymes, they’re learning faster, or they love to see some interesting movies or science videos, any of it.
So, the first thing that is at the source of it is boredom. Now, let’s understand boredom in two ways. One is what’s its connection to screen time and Second, what is actually boredom?
Most of the time right now we’re seeing children also come up with one dialog saying I’m bored and the first thing we generally tend to do, which is the easiest is to get them to screen time, which is either we hand them to a mobile phone or we hand them over to computer or gadget in their hand. We just want to get off it immediately.
According to science, boredom is a precursor, or it is required, it’s a first phase of creativity. So if you’re looking at a child being creative, which is very important for today’s era, where it’s not about IQ anymore, or EQ about any more, it’s about being different. It’s about being yourself, and you know, being unique, then creativity is the key. If you want your children to be creative, then boredom is a precedent, which is when a child gets bored, that’s when they can think differently, that’s when they will find out of the box, solutions.
Now, let’s look at what we can do or how to reduce screen time for kids. So when a child comes and says, I’m bored, the first thing is to not rush and take an action, but we’re going to switch it. You could turn around and throw the ball back at them and ask, What do you think we can do? Can we try something different? What would keep you off it?
Encourage them as much to come up with answers beyond screens, Beyond digital gadgets, beyond TV.
So the moment you ask them, you’re making them think beyond what they are right now thinking is the best solution. it itself is a nice first step that you’ve taken.
Finding alternatives is a nice cure for reducing screen time for kids. What is the child inclined towards which is far more interesting than even screen time. So even if a child is a screen addict, or you know somebody who’s on a heavy digital diet, then finding alternatives can be a very good idea. So some children will be, more inclined to music, some children be more inclined to movement, they would want to jump and they would want to, scream or they would want to play or they would want to maybe do some clay modeling, or most of them also love to play around with the vessels in the kitchen. So you could direct the focus back into the kitchen, into the bedrooms.
Another way to look at alternatives could also be hobbies, or classes, which kind of classes or hobbies or new skills that children can learn. The child may be fascinated with Drawing. So see if they can be something done around drawing. So if a child is into a class, he may also try to use some more time understanding it, or maybe if they’re good at drawing.
Most of the time, most children are very much inclined to working with nature verges, especially doing gardening, sowing their seed, it could be a very simple activity of saying that you would want to try sowing the seed, and it will work differently. And next week, you could try some other seeds to the side, different sizes. The child generally is fascinated with how each size seed will make a difference in the seed. So kindling their curiosity, which is leading them towards creativity rather than taking them towards boredom. So as a parent, our first reaction to actually work it out with them and move them towards creativity with alternate activities.
Pattern Breaking Rule:
Pattern breaking rule is one of the best psychological rules for getting rid of anything, here screen time for kids. Our next point or reason for excessive screen time for Kids is Time or Pattern and this point is also the cure for reducing screen time for kids. Let me show you how!
You all will agree that we often hand over our tabs or phones or switch on the Tv for kids when we are actually working. Like when we are driving for traveling to somewhere or cooking or doing our daily jobs. Most of the house wives neglect that particular time frame when they are busy with their household works and this is the scheduled time for kids to get the screen again.
We think that this 2-3 hrs time frame is okay to give them the gadgets but if you think carefully you may come to know that you are making this a daily job for them. You are making the screen time a habit for kids on a daily basis.
So how to get rid of it?
It’s very easy to control it by breaking the pattern. You just need to divert screen time for kids to anything else. If you are driving, you can sing along with them. If you are traveling, show them the scenes that you can see and let them imagine what they can do. If you are cooking then you can surely make them your little tiny helpers. Kids always enjoy playing with kitchen stuff. Use this enjoyment to break the pattern.
We also noticed that before going to sleep, kids want the screen to see some cartoons or anything that gives them pleasure or makes them curious. This is very bad because what they watch before sleeping, will see in their dreams too and you obviously don’t want those things to spoil your kid’s sleep. So breaking this pattern is very important. Ask them to make a story or ask them to tell you what happened in the school. You can also tell them good stories. That will construct their mind. That will make them love stories and to get stories help them by handing over books the next day while you are cooking or driving or doing household work. Yeah, now you can see the whole pattern right? All the steps I am talking about are not so tough to perform I guess. You just needed to know how! And that’s why we are here.
The next one is a very important one which is,
Support and surrounding you as a parent are going to be the most important factor in their life and you know how you do things and what you do is going to really go a long way in building their future.
So as a parent, when you see them on screen, it’s not to jump on them, pounce on them and say, don’t do it and or stay away from this. I’m not going to give you this. It is about offering support, offering support from their world. Let’s take it that it’s not children. We are equally like children where all of us are hooked to our phones. I haven’t seen adults who don’t have phones in their hands. We are constantly having phones constantly looking into our screens and children are only mirroring it. Even while reading this article you are on screen and you were watching screen more than 10 mins before getting this blog.
So the support that they need from us is to create it in the environment through communication and or try to work more around bonding. bonding in such a way that the child is naturally more interested in your voice and feel there is much more new stuff possible. When your bonding is heavier. They are more inclined to try to talk about what exactly happened with you in the day.
You know something interesting happened, and see if they would like to share it back and try to create more family times and circle times where or maybe it could be a learning time, where you’re talking about what you learn today.
Another very interesting thing that you can look at doing is actually taking IE fasting. You say that, okay, today, two hours, all of us put our gadgets away, and it’s going to be only family time, maybe play something or go out somewhere. Very good way to get children off the screen hook, is to actually go into nature, as a family goes into nature, and say no, no to any of the screens around you. Maybe mountains could be, nature parks could be anywhere where you really spending time with children and spending time is not just walking along, but really talking to them, kindling their curiosity, asking them, what do you see? What do you think? it’s like that.
For example, if you see a giraffe, asking them to see what makes this neck so long, you know, talk like them with them. So that’s going to be a very fundamental factor.
Hey, moms and dads, thank you so much for reading this article. If you found the content useful, feel free to share this with your friends family and with every parent out there. We’d also love to hear your views.
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