In this current day and age, it is common to see children (and everyone else) glued to their TV, smartphone, iPad, iPod, computer, etc. On one hand, it’s great that we have evolved to such an advanced level technology and that information is available so quickly right at our fingertips but on the other hand, it has dissolved the family unit of quality time and good health which desperately need to be restored. A Few Statistics
- Children view on average 27 hours of TV per week. This will lead to them spending more time watching TV than spending time in school by the time they are 18 years of age.
- Studies have proven that there is a direct link between children who watch too much TV and being overweight or obese.
- 55% of parents allow tablet use (like an iPad) for entertainment purposes while traveling
- 41% of parents allow tablet use while in a restaurant
As one can see, many children need more physical activity, outdoor fun, and quality time with family. Not all families are like this but it is becoming more common as parents work harder to provide a “good life” for their children that quality time is lacking and being replaced with technology.
What Parents Can Do
Shut off the TV, tablet, computer, smartphone, etc. Don’t feel bad doing this. Children need more interaction and though they may put up a fuss or argument now, they will thank you in the long run.
- Reading - Books are an excellent way to expand children’s minds and allow them to think creatively with their imaginations while learning to read better.
- Family Time – Dedicate a certain amount of time together every evening and one weekend day a week to family time. Find fun activities to do together as a family like biking, going to the park, playing board games, going exploring, taking a train ride somewhere unexpected, etc. Get creative and your family dynamic will strengthen tremendously.
- Limiting TV Time – Only allow a certain amount of TV to be watched daily (like 30 minutes to 1 hour) and again, make one weekend day a no TV/technology day.
- Not Using TV as a Reward – This will make children behave for the absolute wrong reasons…you don’t want to make not watching TV seem like a horrible punishment…because it’s not!
Over time, your children will adapt to not using technology every waking second of the day. They will become more social, energetic, and creative. Giving your child your quality time will help them develop better while nurturing the parent/child relationship. We know you will reap the benefits even though it may be a tough transition in the beginning!