Dear Parents,Television, social media, cellphones, iPads, laptops, technology's place in our lives is almost inevitable. Moreover, they have become tools that can comfort us a little in a period when our social lives are restricted by the pandemic. Keeping defined boundaries in this virtual world where we have the ability to do all our work, education, and socializing online has become increasingly important. As technology has fully encapsulated our children, we started to think about what we can do to reduce screen time hazards in our children's lives and empower them through education about these technological hazards.
Perhaps we can start with ourselves first. We are the model for our children and what they want to emulate. We know that it becomes difficult to divert our attention when we are using devices. When you turn your attention to the screen during the time you spend with your child, their perspective becomes that the smart device holds more value. It also makes full communication and true "listening" a struggle.
Longitudinal data has now revealed that face-to-face communication is generally weak in homes where screen time is unlimited. Children are starting to isolate themselves by being drawn from real life to the virtual world.
When they sit in front of the screen for a long time, the risk of obesity increases, and the possibility of movement decreases. In this respect, we must emphasize dancing, exercising, cycling, going to the park, and spending time partaking in sensory activities to promote the importance of movement for the brain and overall wellness.
It can be difficult to limit and control our child's screen time when we work from home or outside the house. For this, there are various applications such as Kidslox and Screen Time Challenge that you can download to your phone and iPad. By acquiring these, you can track the time your child spends on the screen, the websites visited, and the location.
Finally, you can practice increasing your family time by making a conscious effort to close yourself to the digital world. You can create a warmer environment by enhancing family communication with various board games, card games, and cooking/baking activities while spending this precious time at home with your child.