Screens help us stay connected during this time of social distancing, but excess use can lead to more feelings of isolation. These resources can help you and your loved ones develop healthy media habits during quarantine times and beyond.
What apps are there to help me track screen time for myself and my children?
Some phones have built-in usage trackers that deliver weekly reports. An app called Screen Time Parental Control is another popular option to manage screen time for Apple and Android users. Visit this Parent’s Guide to Parental Controls from Common Sense Media for more help.
Should I monitor my teen’s activity online?
More important than monitoring is direct communication about online safety and digital citizenship. Start these conversations early, before your child has significant activity online, and keep this communication open, checking in frequently. There are times when monitoring is important, especially if safety is a concern. This should generally be done with your teen’s knowledge, and with the understanding that many kids are able to work around your efforts.
What are some good educational programs for my kids?
Keep in mind that no TV program or app is a substitution for in-person interaction. That said, media can be a fun and engaging supplement to other teaching. Check out these suggestions by Common Sense Media.
Should time on screens for school count toward my child’s daily screen time limit?
There is no single right answer to this question. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends keeping to consistent limits on screen time, including educational media; however, with social distancing constraints, screen time can be a valuable and important tool for connection. For more help balancing flexibility with setting boundaries, check out this article by the Child Mind Institute.
How can I avoid information overload?
Limit how much time you spend catching up on news and world events. It is important to stay informed but it is also important to be mindful of how such information makes you feel.
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