As TVs, cell phones, tablets, and gaming systems become more and more commonplace in the lives of young children, it’s natural for parents to question how much time on technology is healthy, and how much is detrimental.
For children over the age of two, gadgets help stimulate senses, promote listening skills, and boost creativity. Additionally, using technology from a young age can help improve computer literacy and slowly phase kids into an ever-advancing world of technology.
The trick, however, is finding a healthy balance between embracing the benefits of technology and ensuring that it doesn’t interfere with your child’s development and social skills.
One way to promote a healthy balance for children is to allow technology usage, but set clear limits to frequency and length of time. For example, setting a specific number of hours a child can spend on a device per day, and enforcing those time limits.
Balance with Play
Play is very beneficial to children, especially in their developmental phases. Creating a healthy balance between technology usage and play is a great way to diversify your child’s day. For example, allowing one hour of television for every two hours spent playing with toys or going outside.
As children age they will naturally want more independence regarding how they use electronics, but at a young age it’s beneficial to monitor what your child is watching, playing, or browsing. Paying attention to ratings on video games, movies, and video games is a good start to make sure children are consuming age-appropriate media.
Encourage Educational Technology
One of the great things about technology is that there are dozens of educational resources on the internet and TV for children to access. Allowing educational technology usage is a great way to encourage computer literacy without allowing it to negatively impact your child.
While it’s normal to want to monitor and set limits for your child’s technology usage, building trust with them is even more important. Teaching children the value of family time, the importance of engaging in the world around them, and the fun of non-technological activities like sports or crafts can go a long way in promoting healthy technology habits.
Heaven’s Elect Christian Learning Center is a Non-denominational Christian childcare center fully licensed by the state of Michigan. Our Midland childcare center has been serving the community since 2000. Please contact us at heavenselect.com.