Are you worried about the amount of time your kids are spending using digital media?
Technology is a massive part of family life these days and it isn’t uncommon for children as young as three to have their own tablet.
While it can significantly improve your life, there is such a thing as too much technology. If you want to stop technology from taking over your kids’ lives then there are a few things you can do.
Limiting Your Child’s Development
One of the major concerns regarding kids and technology is that it will stunt their development. A study was carried out in 2010 in America by the Kaiser Foundation, which found that on average youngsters were spending up to seven and a half hours using technology every single day. This is a worrying statistic.
Once upon a time kids preferred to play outside with their friends. These days you’re much more likely to find them locked away in their bedrooms using their computers, tablets or smartphones. Communication is being affected but there are more serious problems that can develop from a technology addiction.
If your kid develops a gaming addiction, it could be just as destructive for their development as a drink or drug addiction. This sounds extreme, but it’s been found through various research that gaming addictions can have seriously negative consequences on a child’s development.
Of course, there are other worries you have to contend with if your kids are using too much technology.
The internet is packed full of all kinds of dangers. If they socialise online, you can’t always keep tabs on who they are chatting to. They could also be looking up things that they shouldn’t.
That’s where sites such as Quib.ly can help. The company has produced a list of the best child safe websites. Quib.ly is an excellent resource for parents. You can get answers to questions and share advice and ideas with other parents in relation to technology safety issues.
There are many ways to ensure your kids are safe online, but the question is what can you do to overcome their current tech addiction?
Controlling Your Kids Devices
One unique and effective way to manage your child’s technology addiction is to use the ‘DinnerTime’ app. As reported by Kvue.com, this useful app allows parents to literally switch off their kids smartphones and tablets.
Having time to just sit and chat with your kids without the use of smartphones and tablets can be challenging. It can seem like a constant battle telling them to switch off their device. With this app you can switch the device off yourself if they refuse to listen to you.
So, how does it work? Well you need to install the app on your child’s phone before installing the controller on your own phone.
You then have three different options. You can set it to ‘Take a Break’ which allows you to switch off the device for as long as you want to. Or you can opt for the ‘Dinner Time’ setting which will turn the device off for 30 minutes. Then there’s the ‘Schedule bedtime’ setting which allows you to set a time limit say from 7pm until 7.30am depending upon the age of your child. Many kids just aren’t getting enough sleep because they play on their phones or tablets in bed until late.
The great thing about the DinnerTime app is that even if your child reboots their phone or tablet, the settings will still be in effect. They won’t be able to do anything until you say they can. It can seem like quite an extreme measure but it’s a great option for parents who struggle to get their kids to listen to them.
Monitor And Limit Their Use of Technology
There are many monitoring tools you can get that will analyse how much time your kids are spending online. You can set up a program on the computer which will track how much time is spent online, as well as which sites they go on.
It’s a good idea to monitor how much technology your child uses before you attempt to limit their usage. That way you’ll know where the biggest problem lies and you’ll have a good idea of how to tackle it.
Setting limits is important. Encourage your kids to play out with their friends and take their devices off them before they go. Making sure they get plenty of time away from technology is important so it’s definitely something you need to address if it is currently a problem.