Does Your Child's Screen Addiction Seem to Know No Bounds?
Research shows that U.S. kids, ages 8 to 11, spend an average 3.6 hours a day playing on their digital devices regardless in restaurants, in playgrounds or in friends' houses.
A large study finds that kids who spent less than two hours a day on screens performed better on memory, thinking, and language tests than kids who immerse in screens more.
Walsh, an exercise physiologist who at the time of the study was at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario Research Institute in Ottawa, Canada reported, "Only 5 percent of the children met all three guidelines on screen time, exercise and sleep." Twenty-nine percent of the children didn’t meet any of the guidelines, meaning that “They’re getting less than nine hours of sleep, and they’re not being physically active.”
Parents should be aware when noticing these common signs in your child:
#1 Your child can’t control their screen use
He tend to bargain with you if you try to impose limits on screen time.
#2 Loss of interest in other activities
Books, toys and sports...don’t get them nearly as excited.
#3 It preoccupies their thoughts
Your child keep talking about his video game, can't wait for his favorite YouTuber to come out with the latest post, or acting out scenes from the video games even when he is not playing it at the moment.
How to help your child to cope with the screen addiction?
1. Currency Systems
Nowadays I could see more families and schools institution create a currency system to reward children for getting better at behaviors and to encourage them. If children behave well, parents can make use of stickers, or prop money to reward them. In fact, currency systems are very similar to how the real world works and can have the side benefit of helping them learn how those systems work.
2. Cashing in
Parents can also state rule(s) for their children. If children want to play video games (or watch TV) on their own, they have to use their stickers or prop money to "buy" time. For example, parents can settle on their children needing to cash in 20 stickers at a time which means they could only play 20 minutes of video games or watch 20 minutes of TV on any given day, provided they had enough stickers and provided their homework was done.
Screen addiction jeopardize the health and performance in children. It is something families, schools, and communities need to be aware of.