In today's digital age, it's difficult to avoid screens altogether, especially for children. From smartphones to tablets, laptops to smart TVs, screens are all around us, and children are increasingly becoming addicted to them. However, screen time doesn't have to be all bad. With a little creativity and some guidance, parents can turn screen time into learning time for their children. In this blog, we'll discuss the real problem of addiction to digital devices for children and offer practical advice on how parents can solve it by turning screen time into learning time.
The Problem of Addiction to Digital Devices for Children
According to a report published by Mirror - The average child spends more than four-and-a-half hours per day on electrical devices - and just 40 minutes outside, according to a survey. This means that, based on a 12-hour day, children are spending more than a third of their time looking at screens, and just 6% outside.
While parents want some "ME" time and give mobiles/ other digital devices to children to focus on their work/ sleep better or just to run daily errands, they must remember that every action leads to a reaction. This becomes a habit and norm for the child.
This excessive screen time has been linked to numerous negative effects on children's physical and mental health, including obesity, poor sleep, depression, and anxiety.
Moreover, children who spend too much time in front of screens often miss out on valuable learning experiences. They may become passive consumers of content, rather than active learners who engage with and apply the information they encounter.
Save the recommended digital screen time for different age groups so you can act accordingly.
Recommended Digital Screen Time For Children
Age (in Years)
Daily Screen Time (In hours)
Maximum TWO (excluding homework)
Source: OSF Healthcare
Turning Screen Time into Learning Time
Fortunately, there are several ways that parents can turn screen time into learning time for their children. Here are some practical tips to get started:
Choose high-quality content
Not all screen time is created equal. Some digital content is designed to be educational, while others are purely entertainment. To ensure that your child's screen time is productive, choose high-quality content that's specifically designed to teach or inform. Look for apps, games, and websites that are aligned with your child's interests and age level.
Set limits on screen time
While screen time can be beneficial, it's important to set limits to prevent your child from becoming addicted to digital devices. Experts recommend that children aged 2 to 5 should have no more than 1 hour of screen time per day, while children aged 6 and older should have no more than 2 hours of screen time per day. Be consistent with enforcing these limits and communicate them clearly to your child.
Encourage active engagement
Rather than passively consuming content, encourage your child to actively engage with what they're seeing on the screen. Ask them questions, have them summarize what they've learned, and encourage them to apply the information to real-world situations. This will help them retain the information and develop critical thinking skills.
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Use screens to supplement other learning activities
Screen time shouldn't be the only way your child learns. Instead, use screens to supplement other learning activities. For example, if your child is interested in science, watch a documentary together, then conduct a related experiment or visit a science museum. This will help your child see the connections between what they're learning on screen and the real world.
List of recommended documentaries for children
Here are some documentary recommendations for parents to watch with their children:
"March of the Penguins" - This documentary follows the incredible journey of emperor penguins as they migrate across the harsh Antarctic terrain to mate and raise their young.
"Planet Earth" - This visually stunning documentary series takes viewers on a breathtaking tour of the world's most diverse habitats and the fascinating creatures that inhabit them.
"The Blue Planet" - Another stunning series from the creators of "Planet Earth," this one explores the mysteries of the world's oceans and the amazing creatures that live within them.
"Wings of Life" - This DisneyNature documentary showcases the important role that pollinators like bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds play in our ecosystem.
"Growing Up Wild" - This documentary follows five animal families as they teach their young the skills they need to survive in the wild.
"Penguins: Spy in the Huddle" - This series uses hidden cameras to get an up-close look at the secret lives of penguins.
"Nature's Miracle Orphans" - This documentary follows the journey of orphaned animals as they are rescued, rehabilitated, and released back into the wild.
"Mysteries of the Unseen World" - This National Geographic documentary uses cutting-edge technology to reveal the hidden wonders of the world around us, from the microscopic to the cosmic.
"Dinosaurs: Giants of Patagonia" - This documentary takes viewers on a journey through time to explore the incredible world of dinosaurs, with a focus on the giants that once roamed Patagonia.
"Born to Be Wild" - This documentary follows two dedicated women who are raising orphaned baby elephants and orangutans in an effort to reintroduce them to the wild.
We hope these recommendations help you find some great documentaries to watch with your children!
Introduce new learning games (educational card games for children)
One great way to turn screen time into learning time is by introducing new learning games, such as board games or puzzles, to your child. These games provide a hands-on learning experience that can be just as engaging and fun as screen time.
To get started, consider looking for games that align with your child's interests and learning goals. For example, if your child is interested in history, consider getting a history-themed board game that teaches about historical events and figures. If your child is struggling with math, consider getting a math puzzle or game that teaches math concepts in a fun and interactive way.
By introducing new learning games, you can offer your child an interesting alternative to screens that can still provide valuable learning experiences. Plus, playing games together can also be a great way to bond and spend quality time with your child.
You can buy board games online for children at best prices. These come with great learning and high quality materials.
Monitor your child's screen time
Finally, it's important to monitor your child's screen time to ensure that they're not accessing inappropriate content or spending too much time in front of screens. Use parental controls and monitor their online activity regularly to ensure that they're staying safe and using their screen time productively.
Screen time doesn't have to be a negative influence on your child's development. By choosing high-quality content, setting limits, encouraging active engagement, supplementing other learning activities, and monitoring your child's screen time, you can turn screen time into learning time. With a little effort and creativity, you can help your child develop a healthy relationship with digital devices and ensure that their screen time is productive and beneficial.
In the end, as we always say, Stay Shikshit, Stay Anandit.
Also, stay tuned for useful information regarding development of kids.