When we talk about the ill effects of screening, aggression, obesity, disturbed sleeping patterns, social anxiety. The list goes on and on in our head.
Now flip the coin!
So, the basic questions that always pop up, are following:
- How to use screens in a balanced way?
- What is quality content?
- What are the benefits of positive screening?
Did the benefits on the other side ever come to your notice? We always believe that kids should forego their screen time habits completely and should rather step out, play a sport and enjoy the sunshine.
But a good life is a life lived in the perfect state of balance. So let us get our kids there! Well, there are various advantages to regulated, positive screen time for kids.
Thus, the catch here is regulation and parental control.
Educational content through visuals
We often fail to notice that children are visual learner. In that case, things that pass through their audio-visual senses stay as imagery in their minds, for longer spans of time.
It has been found, that a regulated screen time has helped foster letter and sound recognition. It has advanced learning through stories and prints! Because colors and motion pictures help kids learn faster. This is why schools promote visual nursery rhymes screened as action songs.
Don’t you, as parents, still remember all your rhymes by heart!
Channel to social networking
We believe that social networking sites make kids anxious in real settings, it has a flip side too. Screen time in kids involve all types of networking. It is full of good sites to establish connections among kids growing up. Social networks for kids can be a useful teaching tool, helping them learn appropriate social etiquette, safe sharing practices, and online citizenship.
Most of our regular social networks like Facebook, Twiter, Instagram are out of bounds for those under the age of 13 because of age restrictions and suitability. Here are a bunch of social media platforms with specific safety settings for children under the age of 13.
Break down complicated concepts
Have you ever come across the difficulty of explaining the concept of Cosmos or Algebra to your kids?
Screen time has the solutions to this. There are abundant sites offering solutions to these concepts. Most of these sites offer video tutorials for explaining concepts of Science, Maths, Technology, EVS, etc.
Sometimes if our toddler gets stuck with the x’s and y’s of the world, we could help them. Make it easier for them through the voices and colors on the screens!
Video games can benefit the brain
It has been found in research that kids who play video games are better attuned to their surroundings. These visual skills and connections in their brains help them respond better when it comes to tasks like driving, skating or multi-tasking kids.
We consider it a monster that rots our children’s’ brains and keeps them glued to a couch, but that isn’t completely true! We need to extract the good out of the assets we got.
Well, some video games serve this purpose to increase their neuro-motor skills.
Co-viewing be the boon
It has been identified that screen time is beneficial in terms of television as well as other platforms. It serves emotional, social as well as educational benefits.
The catch here is screen time being the ‘we time’ or ‘family time’, whereby, exchange of ideas, emotions and questions can reside!
Watching a show on Discovery or a sport together as a family can be a family ‘thing’.This shall imbibe the kid with extended knowledge about the world, as well as keep them close to the family.
Screen time can be the perfect ‘learn plus snuggle’ time.
Post sessions to screen time
It is a fact that excessive time spent in front of screens can have adverse effects. The solution to this problem is having an open discussion with your child.
We should get our children to talk about what they are viewing. For example, they might be religiously following a show, Man VS wild or any other origami shows or cartoons for that matter.
Post their screen time, we could take up discussions as to
- What did the character do today?
- Where else in real life have they seen this happen?
- What did they learn from the characters of the show?
Thus, these discussions help our kids to ponder upon whatever they are viewing and not follow any show mindlessly.
Get then to love reading
It has been observed, especially with the three to five year old boys, that when they were exposed to touch-screen reading material, they read more content, more often.
So, this is a solution to our kid’s reading habits. Screen time, with now available platforms like Kindle, can get our kids to inhale words in all the ways they love to do it by themselves!
Equip them with real world skills
It becomes really important for us to understand that some of the games that are developed these days, imbibe a lot of skills within the children.
Skills like creativity, patience, perseverance, budgeting and other skills of multi-tasking come as a bonus to the games as simple as like Minecraft!
So, rather than treating screen time as horrendous pimple that appeared on the wedding day, it should be seen as something advantageous.
1. Current National and International guidelines recommend that children under two years don't have screen time other than video-chatting.
2. Researchers suggest turning off screens, and total detachment at least one hour before bedtime.
Thus, it is really important for us to pick the stones out of the hay, and make the best use of it. So, feed it to the kids at the right time, in the right amount! With technology here to stay, we just need to get over our feverish screen time neurosis, swallow a chill pill and embrace screen time for its virtues.
Because we can either derogate it for its evils and keep it at bay, shunning our kids off all the positive advancements, so we can be great regulators and reap the most out of it- Our very own ‘Screen Time’.