Before we go into how much time our kids must spend in front of the screen, let’s look at what we ourselves do. Because that is what influences their association with screens and mobiles.
How much time do we spend on phones or gadgets? What could we have done if we didn’t have these screens? Maybe spent more time with our kids? And while we discuss about how harmful screens are for kids, why do we forget it’s not doing us any good either.
The concept of even trying to monitor screen time for kids is something strange. I mean where did screens come into the picture for kids? Are we trying to indicate, that of all the options available in toy stores across the country and on global websites, we have been unsuccessful in finding something for our kids to do; that with Google knowing everything, it still doesn’t give us suggestions on how to keep our kids busy; that with a truckload of hobbies, sports, arts and crafts in a culturally rich country like ours, we haven’t found something interesting for our kids to pursue?
The article does suggest what parents must do and how they must restrict screen time for their kids but why not go a step further and restrict screens? This is not to say one shouldn’t learn how to use a computer or be tech-savvy; but to identify the difference between using the phone/computer as a hobby and using it as a gadget is important. A gadget serves certain purposes and especially in today’s tech-friendly world, one must understand its functioning. But that’s where we need to draw the line. For ourselves and for our kids. The problem arises when the minute a child has free time, the need for a screen arises; be it for Netflix, YouTube or games.
The smell of new books, sailing boats in the rains, jumping from square to square in hopscotch, finding the most unique hiding spots etc. We had SO MUCH to do when we were kids. Why don’t we want our kids to enjoy that? Is our laziness or rather our need to find quicker solutions making them lose out on such exciting experiences?
It sure is challenging to keep our kids occupied with our busy schedules, with most mothers being working mothers. But the bottom lines remains, if a child doesn’t know what a mobile can do, he/she will never ask for it. But once he/she has been exposed to the magical, addictive world of screens, it’s rare that they forget about the same.
Go that extra mile, spend that extra hour, pass that extra rule – it’ll all be worth it. It’ll help build children who are enriched with all kinds of experiences; not just screen-related ones.
This blog is based on the article –
Deccan Herald Metro life page17 – 14th May 2018 – Is screen-time harming kids? – http://www.deccanheraldepaper.com.
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