oSummer brings a more relaxed schedule and a lot more free time for the kids. If your kids reach for the cell phone or tablet before anything else, you don’t want to miss these timely tips for managing your kids’ tech use.
I also found this great exercise to have your kids do. Each letter in the word BORED asks a question.
- B – Been creative?
- O – Outside play?
- R – Read a book today?
- E – Exercised for 20 minutes?
- D – Done something helpful?
I have a 13-year-old son who uses a cell phone and tablet to play online games, use the internet, and connect with his friends. My six-year-old likes to watch toy unboxing videos on YouTube, play pet character games, and watch shows/movies on Netflix.
As much as I would love him to start working on his Summer Reading List, he will much more likely be reaching for an electronic device.
The average child age 8 and under in the United States uses more than three personal tech devices—such as a tablet, smartphone, or video game console at home. With even the youngest kids now “connected,” it is important to manage tech time so it doesn’t overtake family time.
More Posts About Kids, Cell Phone, and Internet Use:
::How to Talk to Your Kids About Safe Internet Use
::How to Keep Kids Safe Online
::Internet Safety for Kids
::One Simple Way to Limit Cellphone Screen Time
Managing Kids’ Tech Time in the Summer
Here are five tips for parents on how to manage kids’ technology use to keep family communication first.
Thes tips are brought to you by OurPact, a parental control application that gives parents the ability to block Internet use and apps at-a-touch or through daily time schedules.
- Create tech-free times. If left to their own devices, kids will pick up their cell phone as soon as school is out and not put it away until bedtime. Find at least one or two opportunities during the day—at the dinner table, for example—for everyone to disconnect. Mealtime is a prime opportunity for conversation. Make a commitment and have everyone check their devices at the kitchen door. With OurPact, you can block, schedule, and grant access as you see fit.
- Resist overreliance on technology to pacify boredom. Many parents worry that technology keeps their child entertained. The best opportunities for conversation and learning are often found in everyday situations, such as running errands, long car trips, and traveling to/from school. OurPact limits access to technology to encourage kids to get creative and find something else to do.
- Don’t overestimate the value of educational apps. Children learn best simply through talking, playing, and reading. Technology is not the best way to teach, though it can reinforce and allow them to practice skills under development. You can also remove access to certain apps with OurPact. See how they just disappear?
- Set daily time limits. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends two hours or less of screen time each day. You should make adjustments according to your family’s values, schedule, children’s ages, and children’s individual needs. This is super easy to implement with OurPact. Set it and forget it!
- Be consistent in enforcing the parameters you set for tech use. I know how easy it is to set limitations and then relax or completely forget what I said. Consistency is the key to compliance. Having an app like OurPact that you set once definitely helps with that.
Manage Kids’ Tech Time With a Free App
So what if you had an app that could schedule, limit, watch, control, block, reward, and customize? And, it was FREE?
That’s where OurPact comes in. OurPact is a simple, user-friendly app that allows you to control exactly how your children access technology via phones, tablets, computers and more with ease. Available for iOS, Android, and the Web app, OurPact gives you the parental control you desire, uniquely customized for each child.
How I Limit My Kids’ Tech Use
Each child can have a completely customized schedule based on age, activities, etc. For my 13-year-old, I could block access during the school day, homework time, dinner, and family time. For my six-year-old, I could set a two-hour daily limit and only allow access from 6pm to 8pm (which would be after dinner and before bedtime).
Want to allow your teenager access to one app from 4-5? Done. Want to block everyone during dinner time? Done. Want to set customized schedules and internet access for each child? Done.
OurPact makes it easy to control with one app for the whole family. And even better? OurPact opens communication between the family. This is an award-winning parental app makes screen time less stressful.
What makes OurPact unique?
-Easy to use & set up
-Available for iOS, Android, and web
-Can block both children’s iOS & Android Devices
-The only parental control solution of its kind that is effective, reliable, and FREE.
How do you set up OurPact?
-Parents either download our iOS App from the App Store or sign up at OurPact.com
-From there a parent will need to pair their child’s device to their OurPact family Dashboard. Pairing takes about 1 minute.
-After paired, you will see your child in your dashboard and can either set a block or create a schedule.
How do I address boredom and the use of “educational” apps?
The problem is, a lot of the games and programs that kids are using on their phones and tablets have been specifically designed to hold attention and encourage continued use. That, and whipping out an iPhone at the first hint of boredom is as easy as 1-2-3… Instead, pull out the “I’m bored” list of activities or ask a question for each letter in the word BORED (listed earlier in this post).
My six-year-old daughter also has a tablet. She’s usually playing pet, doll, or educational games. But I still have to keep an eye out for how much she uses the tablet.
OurPact Jr. is the child Android parental control app that pairs to your OurPact iOS parent dashboard.With OurPact Jr., parents have the ability to block Internet, block all 3rd-party apps and schedule device use on their child’s Android devices.
OurPact isn’t for all parents because some families have older children and some have younger. But, we all have something in common … Everyone knows a parent struggling with their children’s device use. Be sure to share this free resource with another parent you think could benefit from OurPact. It’s an incredible gift.
This post is sponsored by OurPact. All opinions are my own. Affiliate links used.
How do you ensure that technology doesn’t interfere with your family time?