How to wean your child and yourself from the screen

After being glued to the device for over a year, many children will struggle to mitigate the technology that provided comfort and connection during a pandemic.

A recent survey of 325 parents conducted by market research firm Ipsos found that 22% had children. An average of 10 hours or more per week for entertainment-related screen time— Much longer than many of the parents surveyed said they wanted. Also, many adults find it difficult to put a device on, so we provide tips from experts on how families can do a digital reset together.

The best suggestions are:

Create a space for the conversation. “The biggest technical problem many families have is losing telephone conversations and family time,” he said. Sherry Turkle, Founding Director An overview of the MIT initiative on technology and self. That’s why she advises you to specify a specific space just for conversation. These include a kitchen and a dinner table.

She also suggests that children do not bring their devices into the car. I agree with this to some extent. Some of the best conversations I had with all three kids happened when we were driving a car to a store or activity. But I’m in favor of taking pills on long-distance expeditions. I’m always packing activity books for kids, but the time on the “Are you there yet?” Screen is reduced. Whining. (In addition, they can check out Google Maps, so they don’t have to ask!)

Dr. Thakur said the only exception to her screen-free zone proposal was television, which could be a good gathering place for the family. I also found this to be true. For a while, seeing “The Mandalorian” and then “WandaVision” was our Friday night routine.

“If you have a screen, make it a shared screen,” said Dr. Thakur.

Resets pre-Covid technical rules. We will use the beginning of summer as an opportunity to reestablish the technical rules that we slid during the pandemic. For example, allow your device in the bedroom at night, or allow video games before your homework or chores are completed.

Take a high-tech Sabbath. Select one day a week to avoid using the screen at all. This also applies to parents. We know it’s difficult in our 24/7 work culture, but if you’re doing a job that doesn’t require you to look at your cell phone on a weekend day, don’t. Tiffany Schran, author “24/6: Give up the screen one day a week for more time, creativity and connection” has been doing this for 11 years with her husband and two daughters. “A full day off every week resets our use of technology,” she said. “It’s like muscle. The more you practice, the easier it gets.”

If you find it too difficult to use your device all day at first, start with a few hours and increase your screenless hours each week to relax slowly and slowly. Schlein said that developing new habits, such as one day a week, can reduce the persistent negotiations and negotiations that occur in the absence of consistent technical routines.

“The biggest thing I don’t want to do is robbing something. You want to position it as” we’re going to get something back, “Shlain said.

Separate good Technical habits Because it’s bad.. Keep in mind that not all usage times are the same. Experts suggest discussing with your child what type of technology use is most meaningful to them and planning to do more.

My 9-year-old daughter spent too much time playing with Roblox in the early days of the pandemic. Since then, it has been superseded by more creative efforts. She taught herself how to create and edit videos on the iPad and how to use the Apple Pencil to create detailed art. Recently she’s been watching a YouTube video about how to make fidgeting toys and is actually making them.

“Technology has a positive impact on subjective well-being when teens can develop skills and develop interest,” said an associate professor at the University of Washington’s School of Information. Said Katie Davis. The impact of technology on teens throughout the pandemic..

Providing alternatives.. It may not be enough to just put the device on the child and tell them to go out. In many cases, providing structure and choice will work more effectively.

Ask your kids to make a list of fun outdoor activities and bottle them so they can come up with ideas whenever they go out. Alternatively, you can turn it over and ask your child to perform a certain number of off-screen activities before allowing the device.Bark, an online safety and surveillance company, posted a list of this chore and activity for children. Choose 3 to complete before using the technology..

Leave the device at home.. Do not bring your device with you when your children go out or when the whole family goes for a walk or park. It helps children develop a habit that they don’t always feel they need a mobile phone, Shlain said.

Unplug using device settings.. Do I really need to look at your phone every time the phone rings to let you know that someone has tweeted? I will not do it. Turn off notifications for some apps or fine-tune notifications in your settings so that only the most important apps are visible. My favorite feature for drowning out unnecessary distractions is Do Not Disturb, which is a quick tap on iOS and Android devices.

Don’t expect change overnight.. Experts say you should expect frustration when you try to reset your family’s technical habits. If you blow away a screenless day in one week, try again in the next week, Shlain said. After all, you can’t switch it on and expect life to return to normal just a year later.

Show empathy.. For many children last year, it is important for parents to recognize how scary, confusing and difficult the past year has been. Parents can emphasize that when the pandemic restrictions are relaxed, children will be able to start more safely and face-to-face contact will be better than screen contact.

Share your thoughts

Which tech reset strategy is most effective when getting out of the online cocoon? What are you planning to do? Join the conversation below.

It can be difficult to meet friends and classmates again, for many children, especially for introverts who have found that the social pressures of adolescent life have eased during a pandemic. ..recently Survey conducted by photo app VSCO With 1,000 teens and young adults, 60% of respondents say they are more anxious about face-to-face interactions than they were before the pandemic.

Teens who participated in Dr. Davis’ study seem to know that direct contact should be resumed. “Even if their experience with technology is meaningful, teens felt that online communication couldn’t ultimately replace direct interaction with friends,” she said. Is writing.

Write to Julie Jargon

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How to wean your child and yourself from the screen

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