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Limit Screen Time


Social-Emotional Learning ^Extra-curricular/At-Home All Ages Strategy


Self-regulation Attention

Limit Screen Time

If your child spends too much time on devices

How To Apply It!

  1. Every family needs to establish their own rules for what is the right amount of time on media and then be consistent in enforcing those family rules.
  2. Get familiar with what experts recommend for screen time. While you don't need to follow the recommendations, they are a good starting point. Here are suggestions from the American Academy of Pediatrics.
  3. Do a family "audit". Over the course of a few days, track your child's time on scheduled and unscheduled activities and compare that with your child's daily screen time. Don't forget time spent in the car, before bedtime, etc. Decide if you think it is the right balance and what, if anything, you'd like to change.
  4. Create screen time rules for the whole family. Include screen-free times, such as during mealtime, 1-2 hours before bedtime and in the car. Rules might be different for each child depending on age, needs, and past behaviors. Or they might be different depending on the day of the week, taking into consideration activities and family schedules.
  5. Be specific. Consider if you want rules to be for all devices or does it depend on the device or the activity? Is it a limit of one hour on the phone or one hour on social media? If you want everyone to follow the rules, the more specific the better. Kids are great at finding loopholes.
  6. Write down your rules and stick to them. While you don't want to be constantly policing your family, if you don't enforce the rules consistently they are likely to be forgotten.
  7. If needed, consider using a monitoring app. Apps can restrict students from using specific websites or apps or block kids from using a device after a certain time or on specific days. While it's important for kids to learn to self-monitor, not all kids have the self-control at the same age. Monitoring software eliminates the need for constant adult reminders.

Why It Works (the Science Of Learning)!

Parents need to ensure that students have a healthy balance between screen-free and and screen time activities, with an understanding that not all screen time activities should be treated equally. While every family will have their own rules, it is important for children to have clear rules and expectations, or they might risk over-using media at the expense of more healthy and educational activities.