So … I have to admit this is actually a topic that my family needs to get a handle on right now.
I decided to write about it because I know this is an issue that comes up for lots of families throughout the year — especially moving into the holiday season when there’s more free time!
We were traveling the past 8 days, and with lots of car-time and plane-time my boys got used to having the distraction of devices (and a little hyper-focused on Pokemon Go, which still boggles my mind), and now we have to “un-do” this go-to-reaction of reaching for a screen to pass the down time.
I fully own that it’s our fault for letting them use devices when we were en-route places, and I know how easy it is to get into that habit, but now it’s time for some much-needed screen detox!!!
It’s so much easier to limit (or eliminate) screen time when the kids are in school because the days are so packed between the full school day, homework and then evening sports or activities. However, over the weekends and the long holiday break, it can be a bit trickier and require a little (or a lot) more structure and boundaries!
What has worked for us in the past (and helps to eliminate the potential battle) to get our kids on board with “screen control,” is to share research with them on how too much screen time has been proven to negatively impact mood, sleep and school performance. It’s a health issue. Just as we wouldn’t let them eat too much candy, we can’t let them use devices too freely.
This generally works well for my kids because it’s a bit frightening to see the research! It helps them step up and get on board with the new structure. This is an article from Psychology Today that I have shared with my kids to help them understand the negative effects of screen time.
I also have found that the Marble Jar technique has worked wonders for my kids and so many families who have used it. I have attached the “how-to” video here that talks you through how to set it up.
Super simple and it works!
Screens and devices are fun for a limited time but it’s up to us as parents to set healthy guidelines for our kids and remind them why too much screen time can be harmful. Now I’d love to hear from you! How will you set guidelines for your kids around screen time? Hit reply and let me know!
Enjoy your screen detox!