No one cares more about your child’s well-being and success than you do. It seems these days that kids are operating electronic devices such as Smartphone, video games, televisions etc at extremely young ages due to how technology have made it easy for them to operate. But not withstanding the flexibility in handling technological products it also constitutes serious danger to them most especially their academic concentration. Although technology for kids is an educative tool, failing to control the usage, will be disastrous to them. It’s clear that technology is here to stay and the world is becoming only more digitally driven.
Controlling how our kids use technology, can be easier than we think. It is better to take control of technology before technology takes over our kids.
10 points on how to effectively control how your kids use technology
Educate them on the negative and positive effects of technology
Do not assume your child knows it all, be blunt and state the obvious. Talk to your kids so they know what is acceptable, what sites you want them to stay away from, and who they are allowed to text or chat with. Feel free to share the dangers and good aspect of technology to your kids so that they will not feel that you are depriving them from what other kids are enjoying in their various home or what technology has to offer to them so as in return they can teach other kids who want to compromised the standard you have already set for them.
Create time for your kids
Playing or watching alongside with your children offers several benefits. You’ll be able to vet the content they are accessing, the child will learn more from the activity through your interaction, and you’ll bond through the shared experience. Kids love attention where they don’t see that they look for a nearby technology to keep them going. Creating time for your kids to chat, play and answer their pending questions keeps them busy removing their mind from technology addiction.
Set a standard
By practicing what you preach instead of the hypocritical “do as I say not what I do” approach, you emulate the habits you want your kids to pick up and show them that there are times for using technology and times to do other things. What behaviors are you modeling? If you aren’t exercising discipline and you are constantly on your devices like check your phones every hour, log late hours working or surfing the internet on your laptops, watch your favorite shows, etc , you can’t expect anything different from your kids. Teach and model kindness and good manners online. Because kids are great mimics, limit your own media use in front of them. In fact, you’ll be more available for and connected with your kids if you are interacting, hugging and playing with them rather than simply staring at a screen.
write out rules and paste in your kids room or where their eyes can easily reach so as to guild on when to use the technologies made available in the house so as not to be addicted to those technologies such rules like: Chores and Homework Come Before watching television and Video Games, Devices Don’t Come to the Dining Table/don’t turn on the television while eating etc. Also make sure they stick to those rules and offenders should be punished.
Avoid putting a Television in your child’s room
Avoid your kids watching videos behind closed doors at the comfort of their room always supervise what they watch. Having a TV in the kids’ bedroom has been linked to a number of problems including lower test and examinations scores in their academics, lack of concentration, sleeping problems, obesity and other immoral acts.
Turn it off!
When the kids are not watching a specific program or using a particular device, turn it off. Keep them off during mealtimes and especially when they are studying or doing homework. also block access to sites that you don’t want your kids to use/visit.
Choose a channel to watch and video game to play for your kids
The best way to know what your kids are watching or playing is by helping them pick out a channel or a game. When picking out a new movie or game, read the reviews, age limit, or ask other parents. Above all, know your child and trust your own instincts on what is appropriate.
Set a time limit
limit the amount of time your child spends on watching TVs, Internet usage, play video games etc. More importantly, be committed and stick to those times you set.
Engage them in other activities other than technology-based activities
Find great ways to spend family time together with your kids without technological devices, such as engaging them in sporting activities, telling stories to them or reading good books etc.
Trust and be friendly to your kids
Find out where they’re hanging out online. Get familiar with the Websites your kids visits. Have them show you their favorite sites and discuss what they like about them. Tell your kids that if someone they are chatting with online; harasses, bullies, or makes them uncomfortable in any way, they should feel free to talk, either to their parents, teacher(s), or an adult they trust.