Monday, 2 December 2013

Do you limit and keep an eye on your childrens screen time?

We are currently on holiday and it has been one blessed with very little screen time and lots of family time.  A real reminder of our summer in the UK, where my boys spent most of their spare time out in the fresh air with friends.

However, we are returning back to a very cold and dark UK this week and I know that this will mean that the boys are going to want to use their screens again.  Part of me knows that this is just due to the dark nights and cold, but part of me really wishes I had the guts to got screen free.

It is really hard for me to know what to think of screens and electronic time and I am aware of the fact that I spend my day working in front of a PC and I do not want to be hypocritical with the do as I say not as I do quote, but I am also aware that this is the first generation with such access to the internet etc.

So we do have some very basic rules:

  1. No screens after 6pm
  2. No aggressive games
  3. No screens if you have been bad
  4. No screens at dinner or any other social time.
  5. No screens in anyone's bedrooms
  6. Total honesty on what you are viewing

The boys have access to computers and screens at school and during golden time on a Friday afternoon are allowed to play games such as educational horse game for kids and monshi monsters or even Bin weavels.

Mostly they go on educational websites during school hours or BBC bitesized and I know that there computer access is supervised at school.

It is much harder at home due to the nature of devises to keep an eye on what they are accessing, but we have tried to make sure that we are aware of what they are doing and we also discuss things such as internet bulling at home and agree that they can not have access to Facebook etc until they are in their teens and even then that I will have access to their accounts.

What are your thoughts?




2 comments:

  1. Sounds like you have got the balance right from over here. I try to make screen time work for me. My boys are nearly 2 and 4. I find that if they watch TV for a little when they are ready for the day then I can get ready. Same when I am trying to cook and wipe the kitchen afterwards. They both love the smart phone and will pinch them to play games we have downloaded if they can. This is limited in the week and relaxed a little at weekends. Only a little because I won't let them play on my phone and Daddy works every weekend so access to the phone is limited by default. It's a tough one because the world is all about technology but there does have to be a balance.

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  2. My children are 2 and 4 too. They see BBC Breakfast in the morning because its something that Daddy always has on. Once he goes to work the TV goes off, and doesn't come on again until about 9pm usually, once they've gone to bed. I do put it on occasionally, if the weather's rubbish, if I'm unwell or if they ask for it, but it's limited to "programmes I think are ok" which I've recorded on the freeview box, and usually only one or two programmes (about half an hour). Equally, they love to play on the i-pad, or do a puzzle on the PC, and this is allowed only a couple of times a week for a maximum of half an hour a time. Weekends when Hubby is home the TV is on most of the time, so I like to keep things fairly screen-free during the week. I imagine that as they get older things will relax more as they become more autonomous, but Hubby and I are agreed that they won't have TV in their bedrooms, and that internet use should be well supervised, and open conversations about online bullying or other dodgy issues are very important as they get more access.

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