Below are some screen-time tips for the holidays!

The holidays are quickly approaching!  With that, schedules tend to change a bit.  Kids are out of school– so there’s a little more time freedom.

It’s a great time to relax, refresh and enjoy the down time.  But, it can also lead to increased screen-time for the kids.  According to one psychologist, screen-time can increase to around 6 hours a day! So before then– make a plan!

Sure, screens can help keep the kids busy, but we all know it’s not always the most beneficial way for them to spend their days.

A child development specialist, Dr. Kristy Goodwin has some great tips on limiting screen-time during the holidays.

  1. Create a plan BEFORE the holidays begin! Be clear and set firm rules.
  2. Take the time to find the best, age-appropriate content.  Find fun, educational things for the kids to enjoy- this is much better than mindless scrolling that can lead them to inappropriate content.
  3. Enforce the 20-20-20 rule! This helps prevent eye strain and eye damage! Every 20 minutes, take a 20-second break, looking at something 20 feet away and blink 20 times!
  4. Be specific about cut-offs! As in– you can watch 2 episodes, or spend 30 minutes watching XYZ.
  5. Give warnings– just verbal reminders that screen time is coming to an end, preparing them- to avoid disappointment and tantrums!
  6. Get involved! This is IMPORTANT!  You should know what your kids are watching.  Plus, this shows your kids that you cares about them and what they’re doing!
  7. Establish no-tech zones! Create areas and times that are tech free: the bathroom, dinner time, etc.
  8. Schedule tech-free times. Make time to play outside! Turn those screens off an hour to an hour and a half before bedtime (this actually will help promote better sleep too).
  9. Stop using screen-time as a reward! This can send the wrong message.
  10. Use parental controls.  It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to know that the internet can be a very dangerous place (even for adults).  Make sure your kids aren’t stumbling across adult content.  And remember, parental controls aren’t 100 percent– so stay aware of what your kids consume on a regular basis!

Source: Family Zone

 

Looking for some great, screen-free holiday fun?  Check out our Holiday Events in the CSRA!