Date : February 7, 2020
Screen time. Is there any other phrase that strikes as much fear in the heart of a parent? We are constantly hearing of all of the negatives that come with screen time but often we feel like screens are so incredibly pervasive that there is just no escaping them.
In an educational sense, we know that some screen time is good for children. It can help them learn as they navigate their way through different apps and games that are designed to tap into their sense of creativity and wonder. However, we must have it as our goal to reduce screen time that is detrimental to development.
It’s important to reduce screen time if screens are being used prolifically or the content that our children are viewing is not designed with their best interests in mind. This may take the form of endlessly watching movies or videos (usually of people playing games or unboxing toys) or playing games that do not serve an educational purpose.
Here are some key ways that you can reduce screen time in your home without causing fights. (Yes, it is possible!)
Mission? Reduce Screen Time!
Kicking It Old School
Neighbourhood play time or play dates are an excellent way to draw attention away from devices. Arrange for a play experience with a fellow family or if you’re lucky enough to live in a friendly area, encourage the neighbourhood kids to play together. Some outside time and creative games are sure to while away the hours – no devices in sight.
We are big believers in the power of words. Introducing a variety of books, as well as some library visits, into the routine can see your child diving head and heart first into the wonderful world of literature.
Get Amongst It
A bush walk or an extended park play will see your children outdoors and smelling the sweet air as they race around to their heart’s content. This is as great for exercise as it is for an appreciation of nature.
Tourist in Town
Tour your own city or town and pretend to be tourists for the day. Visit all of those odd little places you’ve seen but never experienced. Eat at local milk bars and cafes, walk the streets, take photos – the world is your oyster!
Send your children outdoors and ask them to collect various items in nature. Challenge them to come up with artistic representations of the great outdoors using the natural materials that they find.
May Gibbs to the rescue! Reduce screen time by relaxing into some classic literature from a true Australian icon.