In a world where children are "growing up digital," it's important to help them learn healthy concepts of digital use and citizenship. Parents play an important role in teaching these skills. Here are a few tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) to help families manage the ever-changing digital landscape:
- Set screen time limits and encourage playtime.
- Screen time shouldn't be alone time.
- Be a good role model.
- Limit digital media for your youngest family members.
- Create tech-free zones.
- Don't use technology as an emotional pacifier.
Finally, AAP suggests creating a Family Media Plan that is specific to your family. According to the AAP, "Media should work for you and within your family values and parenting style. When used thoughtfully and appropriately, media can enhance daily life. But when used inappropriately or without thought, media can displace many important activities such as face-to-face interaction, family-time, outdoor-play, exercise, unplugged downtime and sleep."
As you anticipate your children being home for an extended winter break, consider taking time to establish a Family Media Plan together.