The outbreak of COVID-19 hit affected the whole world with some unpredictability.It was beyond our imagination.Some countries are trying to normalize and some are still stuck. Social distancing and isolation is now the new normal.
In this pandemic situation parents are facing lots of challenges to raise their kids.All of sudden the whole scenario has been changed.Before the pandemic, kids were not allowed to bring mobile phones to school and now schooling is going on mobile phones.The situation has maximized kids screen time and we have no other choices.
It is known that digital space is no longer safe for young children.Lots of issues are rising with this.Not all, but most kids already have an addiction of mobile/digital space.At this point it is the toughest challenge for parents to raise kids. Due to less physical activities and home isolation it becomes more worse to deal with their demands.It has increased parents struggle to mantain kids mental and physical health.
As a parent how I reduced my kids screen time?
Like almost every mother I was always aware of my kids interest.I tried my level best to increase their interest in other activities.Besides mobile games,YouTube videos,TVshows they love to read books,make cartoons and also drawing.This helped me a lot to shift their interest from digital space to other activities.
Some steps really helped me.
1.Kids immitate us.So I choosed to read books rather than using mobile phone infornt of them.This helped me and my kids equally. Thankfully I have cultivated reading habit since my childhood.Now my kids are also developing this habit.
2.Buy atleast two new books in a month.Kids love new things.But that doesn’t mean that you need to buy new things for them frequently. But in case of book it is good to buy new books to increase their interest in reading.I use to buy atleast two book in a month to encourage them.Due to the new book they try to finish their old books first.This makes me really very happy.
3.They are bound to use screen to do their school activity.But I never allow them to use our phones without permission.
4.Ask for help in my house chores.I use to take help from them. I have assigned some particular works for them on regular basis e.g. folding their clothes,arrange study table,make the bed,watering plants.Since my elder son is 12 years old,he can guide his younger sister who is now 5 years old and they too enjoy their company.
5.Encourage them to explore their creativity.Every kid is unique.He or she has a unique quality. But it is important to know what is that.Parents plays a vital role in exploring their kids creative mind.When you idendtify the quality of your kids,you should encourage them to be more creative. I have realised that my kids love to draw and I give them a comfortable space to do it. Along with that space I always encourage them to be more creative.Now they have adopted it as their hobby.
6.Time table.It is not possible that your kids will totally avoid digital space. But you can reduce the use of gadgets by making a time table. Like their study time table there should be a strict time table for Television or mobile/computer.I am doing this and it really helps me.Now my kids watch TV twice in a week for maximum two hours.For computer games, the same instruction they follow. With this they are also happy. By getting a pre set time table they never get fusrated to quit their game or show.
7.Gadgets are not only for fun, these are educational tools also.This is the reason for which we can’t totally avoid gadgets.We should teach our kids the importance of gadgets.They should know that gadgets are not toys. For that, parents should avoid using their mobile phone,tablets or other gadgets infornt of kids,for their entertainment.
There are some horrifying data in internet about kids and teens gadgets addiction.Where young kids spend approx 6 hrs and teens spend more than 9 hrs with gadgets in a day.Is it acceptable for parents?For sure ‘No’.
We can make excuses by saying our kids are stubborn,they are out of control.But with few commitment and dedication we can control their screen time before they get out of control.It is possible to live an active and healthy childhood with limited use of screen time for our children.With this realization, I put my efforts to minimize my kids screen time and I succeed it.
Thank you for reading🙏