Creating a screen-free childhood for your children sounds like an impossible task in this day and age. Taking a few steps, though, can help foster an environment that will ensure your child is fulfilled without having to set his or her eyes on a screen or device.
Plan your day
This may sound too simplistic, but having a plan of action, especially for those in-between moments, can make a difference in making the day screen-free for your child. Let your child know the plan for that day. It helps them know what to expect and how much time they have.
Don’t be afraid to be the boss
Take charge of your child’s time while you still have a say in their day. When they are older, it will be harder to have a positive influence on how much time they spend on their devices. Once you’ve established boundaries, stick with them!
Take them outside
Ensure they are engaged in the wonders of outdoor life by scheduling some time out of the house and neighborhood. Make the selection of activity fun in itself. Write choices on separate pieces of paper and pick one out of a hat – hikes, biking adventures, picnics, beach days, visits to the local botanical garden or visitor-friendly farm. Check out your local newspaper or community magazine for ideas on fun outdoor activities for your child.
Provide attractive alternatives
Put magazines, books, toys and board games in your child’s area so they have some attractive options for quieter moments in the day. Remember, the idea is to surround them with attractive alternatives to screens!
Take up a new activity with your child
Whether it’s playing guitar, painting, juggling balls, or learning dance moves, take the time to just be with your child in an engaging, fun way.
With a little time, energy and creativity, we can steer our children away from screens. Developing this habit early on in their lives can help ensure less time on a device and more quality time with family and friends.