Creators of technology have focused efforts to make downtime and travel more entertaining for children. For instance, when travelling long distance, children have access to entertainment such as; movies, music, and interactive video games. As the video game industry continues to grow, how can parents and caregivers make sure we monitor the type of games our children are exposed to and how long they are playing them? Here is a quick general guide for the amount of time and type of game play is appropriate for certain age groups.
- 0-2 years: Children in this age range should not play video games. The young brain is still developing, so exposure to overwhelming amounts of information on screens is difficult for babies to process, and it could lead to attention problems later in life.
- 2-6 years: Even though children in this age range have probably figured out how to use the television by now and are capable of playing simple, basic video games, it is still recommended that they don’t start playing video games quite yet. There are too many other things that children this age need to focus their brain energy on, such as learning to read, playing with other children, and playing outside.
- 7 and up: Children 7 years and older can play, but they shouldn’t play more than 5-10 hours a week. Time over 10 hours a week should start having parents and caregivers ask, “What is this child really learning?” If children start playing more than that, it might cut into other healthy activities, like being active and forming friendships.
Heaven’s Elect Policies on Electronics:
- Electronics are not allowed for children under two
- Electronic devices are not allowed from home
- Small personal iPads are available on a limited basis for teachers/students starting in the three year old preschool
- TV is available on special occasions for a Disney® movie and educational purposes