Balancing Screen Time

Children are the target audience for many television shows, movies, and internet content. Many kindergarten school students spend hours on end parked in front of screens connecting with friends, watching programs, or learning a new skill. Quincy Catholic Elementary Schools uses technology to prepare students for the world they will enter as young adults, but moderation is key. Parents can help their children to balance their screen time by intentionally creating an environment that allows for technology without letting it take over.

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Limit Duration Of Screen Time Sessions

Spending too much time in front of screens can create many problems. Many children and adults develop addictions to video games and social media. Encouraging shorter sessions from a young age helps to create better habits as your children get older. Try these ideas to encourage shorter sessions.


Require breaks after a certain amount of time.
Set a timer and give a 5-minute warning to allow your child time to finish up what they are doing on their own terms
Engage in physical activity or outside play in between screen sessions for balance

Offer Opportunities To Unplug

A major reason that so many kids spend so much time in front of screens is that they are easy and accessible. Most households have at least one television, computer, tablet, or cell phone. Electronic devices can be used solo but can also allow for socialization with friends in the next room or another country. Much of the content on screens is specifically targeted at children, appealing to their needs and wants. Fortunately, it is easier to compete with screens than you might think. Try offering some of these opportunities to your children:


Nature hikes with the family
Join a sports team or other extracurricular activity at Quincy Catholic Elementary Schools
Keep lots of art supplies on hand for creative pursuits
Spend a little time each day outside, even in inclement weather

Set Boundaries And Expectations

There is no single set of screen time guidelines that will work for every child or family. As a parent, you will need to consider what your child’s needs are and how it affects other aspects of their life as well as the impact on other members of the family. The most important thing is to create rules and adhere to them consistently so your child knows what is expected of them. Consider adding some of these guidelines to your family screen time policy:


Designating some rooms as screen-free zones, such as not allowing phones at the dinner table or restricting computer use to communal spaces
Parental controls on internet-enabled devices to monitor the type of content your child consumes
Different sets of guidelines for different aged children in the same family
Using screen time as a privilege that must be earned, for example only allowing screen time after completion of homework and chores 

Join A Community Of Inquisitive Learners In Quincy IL

The best way to find your ideal screen time balance is to help your child develop other interests and schools. A Quincy Catholic Elementary Schools education gives students access to opportunities to learn and grow offline. Learn more about how we make quality education accessible for students from all walks of life.

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Balancing Screen Time