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Our Child’s Screen Addiction May Be Our Fault

Before pointing fingers at junior’s screen addiction, we should evaluate our own device use first.

Does it run in the family?

I’m guilty of it. We’re all guilty of it. You may tell yourself it’s just a quick email check at the dinner table, or that it’s just a quick look on Facebook just before bed. I, for one, always tell myself it’s a short snap for the gram, no big deal because who cares, right? Well, junior cares, and learns.

Technology is here to stay and for many of us, it’s almost as essential as food and oxygen. After all, we need our digital devices for work and entertainment. It’s become a great help to our lives, but what happens when we don’t limit our device use? Since children are fast learners, if your child sees you constantly staring at the screen, they may rationalise prolonged screen time as an acceptable way of life.Herein lies the problem. For many of us parents, we think we can control our children’s screen time without controlling our own, and that’s not reasonable. According to research done in America, 56% of parents admitted to using their devices while driving, and half their adolescent children notice this.  Obviously, we don’t want our children to text and drive, yet why do we parents do it? This is merely a symptom of a larger issue – that our children’s screen addiction may be a reflection of our own.

Cultivate good device habits.

The little things count, so if you want to manage your child’s screen addiction, it’s time we take a look at our own. Here are 3 things you can do to manage your own screen time, and have junior follow suit:

1. Create device-free zones

Rules rule. If you want your child to follow the rules, you best do so too. Set some device-free time every day, be it for 2 hours or even 3. It can even be done over dinner. Whatever duration of time you choose to set, be sure to lock up those phones in a safe spot and participate in activities together with your little one. Not only does this help limit your child’s screen time, it also makes time for you guys to catch up on some good ol’ family bonding. The plano app allows you to schedule device-free periods for your child to ensure that your child doesn’t spend extended periods of time on their phone.

2. Use your devices together

To manage both your screen time and your child’s screen time, it’s also good to set device timings as well. During this time, your child and yourself are allowed to use your devices for whatever purpose. You can also set break times too. That way, your child won’t feel alone in his/her device restrictions. At the same time, talk to your child about what interests him/her on the internet. You can use this as a chance to educate your child about what content is good or bad for their consumption on the internet.

3. The earlier you start, the better

Don’t procrastinate in making these little changes. It’s time we parents walk the talk and manage our screen time before managing our little one’s. If your child is still young, establish these device schedules and stick to them so that your little one will grow up with good device habits.

The plano app  helps to remind your child to practice good device habits every day by prompting your child to take eye breaks and adhere to their device-free periods. If they follow these prompts, your child can earn points which he/she can use to request items from the plano shop to encourage device-free activities.

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