It seems these days children are more in tune with technology than ever before. Some children even work smartphones better than their parents! When it comes to technology, children are not only starting to use it at a younger age, but they are also using it in more aspects of their lives, both at home and at school.
Today, technology is a source for learning and entertainment for youngsters. Computers and tablets can be used to play online math and reading games, and television can be used to watch fun, educational programming. However, too much exposure to these various forms of electronic devices can have some distinct disadvantages for your children such as trouble sleeping, short attention span, less physical activity and may even expose them to inappropriate content.
Children are growing up in a world of vastly transforming technology, and this prevalence of media and technology affects their development. As parents, it is important to make sure your youngsters grow up to be intelligent and well-rounded instead of overstimulated and uninterested individuals. Read below for five things you can do with your children to ensure that they are getting the appropriate downtime they need in today’s world.
1. Limit Screen Time- Setting a time boundary on electronic devices frees up time for your child to engage in other activities. Whether it’s one hour of TV and videogames a day or a couple of hours a week, set a limit and stick to that number.
2. Plan A Day Outdoors- Pack a lunch and take a trip with your child to the park or the beach and leave all the gadgets at home. Being outside allows children to relax and get in touch with their other senses, like touch and smell, which they can’t get through a TV screen. Use this time to connect with your child and experience the outside world uninterrupted.
3. Do Arts And Crafts Projects- Gather some construction paper, scissors, crayons, markers, and glue and get your creative juices flowing. Cutting paper and drawing helps to build the muscles your child will need for writing.
4. Have Story Time- Grab a children’s book and read aloud to your child or along with him or her. You can get creative and make up a story and allow your child to decide how the story ends. Reading opens your child’s mind to people, places and ideas beyond their favorite television show. It also broadens their vocabulary and helps to foster a love of books in the future.
5. Invest in Open-Ended Toys- Technology devices like TVs and tablets deprive children of uninhibited pretend play by laying out an adventure for them to follow. Reignite their imagination with stuffed animals, blocks and dress-up costumes so they can dream up their own world.