Some children seem to be born with a mobile phone or a tablet under their arm because they do not detach from them, although perhaps some of the fault lies with the parents who sometimes offer it to them to be able to rest without being aware of the consequences that this may have. Without wanting to look for culprits and look to the past, we are going to focus on the present and give you seven tricks to limit your children’s time in front of the screens.
How to control children’s exposure time to screens
More tips and tricks to limit children’s time in front of the mobile or tablet
For most parents, this is one of the most complicated issues in relation to their children’s education, especially when they begin to approach pre-adolescence (not to mention in full adolescence).
How many times have you had an argument with your children about this topic? If you are one of those who have already lost count and want the exposure time spent in front of the screens to stop being a reason for distancing yourself with your children, then surely this article interests you, because we have discovered some tricks that can help you to improve the situation. Take note!
- Let them be the ones who organize their times
This does not mean that you cannot put limits and restrictions on the time spent on screens, but trust us, no teenager likes to be told what time to what time they can use their phone. With a general limit on time, you can tell them ‘how would you like to organize your day?’ That way they learn to manage their life, their study and fun times; After all, what all parents want is for them to learn this so that when they are adults they will be able to self-manage and organize themselves, right?
- Be realistic with the times we live in
We are not justifying excessive screen time, but we cannot expect our children to behave as we did when we were their age. For many, at least my generation, screen time was only with one screen, the television. Now there are smartphones, tablets, television, computers, more options for watching movies and videos, video games … The offer is too wide and tempting and has even become the usual way of life. Think about the time you spend looking at your phone yourself. When you were a teenager, you would not have imagined it.
- Explain how social networks, video games…
Just like at a certain age we have to talk to our children about drugs or other addictions, they also need to have information about technological addiction, which is still often underestimated. Explain to them how this type of information affects our brain, how they play with our minds, our hormones, etc. If you don’t know much about the subject, look for information.
- Let him calmly see what he is missing
If your son or daughter spends too much time playing video games, you can make him see that he is missing the opportunity to go out with his friends, learn to draw, play the guitar … Do not say it as a scolding, but as something natural. For example: ‘Today you have been playing video games with your phone for two hours, you could have used that time playing with your friends. If you had stayed, you would have had a great time, can you imagine? ‘Of course, you must open your arms so that he can do those other things that you propose: let him go out, take him to the park where he has met with his friends, be willing to take him to that after-school activity or accompanying him to the bus …
- Suggest other smarter uses of screens
It does not mean that there is still no limitation, but if your children invest their screen time in something with which they can learn other things, much better. However, do not underestimate the rest, for example video games. If a video game is a fun time for your child, it’s okay to enjoy it for the right amount of time. Do not restrict his play time, better teach him to have fun in another way and, of course, lead by example.
- Don’t let this turn into an argument that affects your relationship
No child or adolescent will respond positively to a limitation if it also involves a scolding, bad attitudes or an argument … In fact, you would not do it either, right? Therefore, if your child gets very angry when you expose him to the new limitations, do not put a wall of authority on the subject. Instead, negotiate with your son or daughter by reaching an agreement, so that they feel they have at least some opinion and autonomy on the matter. You will see that this way you will achieve much greater changes than the other way.
- Be patient
The mantra of any parent is patience and it also applies here. Don’t try to make your kids lose their bad screen habits overnight, but don’t think it’s too late to do so either. You just have to gradually apply these tricks that we propose, stay firm with the restrictions, but without oppression towards your children and be patient. You’ll see, without realizing it, your children spend much less time in front of the screens. Luck!