Advertising
Advertising

4 Ways to Help your Teenage Kids Manage Screen Time

4 Ways to Help your Teenage Kids Manage Screen Time

Until about two decades ago, parents had little to worry about when it came to bringing up their kids. As long as younger kids stayed away from strangers, teenagers didn’t sneak off in the middle of the night to house parties or date the wrong people, everything was fine. However, as the rate of advances in technology began to skyrocket over the past decade, so did the complexity of dealing with kids, especially teenagers.

Teenagers and kids, in general, became increasingly addicted to technology. PCs, Macs, and gaming consoles became must-have pieces of technology at home, with kids spending hours on end on their devices. The entry of smartphones and tablets over the past few years has added on to the woes of many parents and families in the digital age. Increased screen time has been associated with various developmental challenges, including health, societal, and psychological deficiencies. Exposure to the internet from a young age has also increased cases of cyberbullying across the globe.

So, faced with a modern problem, how can parents help their kids to manage screen time in the face of social media and an active internet community? It is important to remember that not all screen time is bad, as long as teenagers mix time on their devices and other healthy behaviors away from these devices.

Advertising

As a parent, there are a couple of things you can do to help the situation. Check out this list of the most popular tips for helping your teenage kid manage their screen time.

1. Encourage Balance, not Restrictions

classmates-studying-at-home_1098-2647

    When most parents discover that their teenage kids are screen junkies, they tend to have an adverse knee-jerk response that often results in tight restrictions, wild emotions, and a combative mood around the house. While excess screen time may be unhealthy for kids of any age, some screen time may be necessary for teens. So instead of locking away every gadget around the house, it is best to moderate the amount of time that kids spend on their media devices.

    Advertising

    Encourage them to participate in other activities away from their devices, especially if you suspect screen time is interfering with other facets of their lives. And because teens are more likely to open up than younger kids, start a discussion about their screen habits and encourage them to find balance.

    2. Get Involved

    Young man and his son using a laptop

      Kids and teens often get their screen usage habits from an older adult, usually a parent. Most parents always find it difficult to put the tablet, laptop, or smartphone down, a trait that is copied by kids and teens back at home. Setting a good example will not only help your kids cut down on media use, but will also help establish healthy media habits around the house.

      Advertising

      You can also get directly involved in the type of media they consume. Watch their favorite movies or TV series with them or pick up a gamepad and indulge in a one-on-one drag race on their game consoles. This way, they will know you understand their issues when you tell them they need to cut down on screen time.

      Establish screen time rules together and give them a chance to come up with their own screen schedules. This will also help them become responsible teenagers and adults in future.

      3. Plan Tech-free Vacations

      Advertising

      joyful-family-camping-in-the-park_1098-1846

        Believe or not, there are still vacation spots that are too remote for cellular and internet connectivity. Some spots even take away your devices when you check in, which can be a good way for the whole family to tune off. Most kids and teens won’t readily lay down their devices so make sure you set your foot down as a parent on this one.

        You can also pick out vacation spots that make it difficult to use phones and tablets. Activities such as biking, windsurfing, and most water sports make it virtually impossible to use their devices.

        4. Establish Media-free Zones in the House

        tech-free-zone

          The house is often the biggest crime scene when it comes to media overuse. Most teenage rooms are normally stocked with the latest in gadgetry – from the latest PlayStation console to HD TVs. Set clear rules to guide the time and place that media devices can be used. For instance, you can ban media usage in the bedroom, at the dinner table, or when the kids are doing homework.

          Conclusion

          Making the adjustments to media habits around the house will undoubtedly be an uphill task, especially if your teenage kids have carried on their bad media habits from early childhood. Still, it’s always better to be late than never. If poor screen habits aren’t rectified, they can spill over into adulthood where they can have much more drastic effects on a young adult’s life.

          More by this author

          Vikas Agrawal

          Designing & Marketing

          How to Create an Infographic Resume That Will Impress Your Future Employer This Skill Is Not Taught in School, But It Hugely Affects Our Success in Life How I Get Things Done with Only Half of the Time Others Need Writing a Great Value Statement Can Bring In Tons of Money for Your Business All-Natural Tips for Fighting Insomnia and Sleeping Better

          Trending in Technology

          1 Best 5 Language Learning Apps to Easily Master a New Language 2 18 Best Time Management Apps and Tools (2019 Updated) 3 20 Best Productivity Apps for Mac You Should Have in 2019 4 40 Top Productivity Apps for iPhone (2019 Updated) 5 How to Improve Your Computer Skills to Get Ahead in Your Career

          Read Next

          Advertising
          Advertising
          Advertising

          Published on January 18, 2019

          Best 5 Language Learning Apps to Easily Master a New Language

          Best 5 Language Learning Apps to Easily Master a New Language

          Learning a new language is no easy feat. While a language instructor is irreplaceable, language learning apps have come to revolutionize a lot of things and it has made language learning much easier. Compared to language learning websites, apps offer a more interactive experience to learn a new language.

          The following language learning apps are the top recommended apps for your language learning needs:

          1. Duolingo

            Duolingo is a very successful app that merged gamification and language learning. According to Expanded Ramblings, the app now counts with 300 million users.

            Duolingo offers a unique concept, an easy-to-use app and is a great app to accompany your language acquisition journey. The courses are created by native speakers, so this is not data or algorithm-based.

            The app is free and has the upgrade options with Duolingo Plus for $9.99, which are add free lessons. The mobile app offers 25 languages and is popular for English-speaking learners learning other languages.

            Advertising

            Download the app

            2. HelloTalk

              HelloTalk aims to facilitate speaking practice and eliminate the stresses of a real-time and life conversation. The app allows users to connect to native speakers and has a WhatsApp like chat that imitates its interface.

              There is a perk to this app. The same native speakers available also want to make an even exchange and learn your target language, so engagement is the name of the game.

              What’s more, the app has integrated translation function that bypasses the difficulties of sending a message with a missing word and instead fills in the gap.

              Download the app

              Advertising

              3. Mindsnacks

                Remember that Duolingo has integrated gamification in language learning? Well, Mindsnacks takes the concept to another level. There is an extensive list of languages available within the app comes with eight to nine games designed to learn grammar, vocabulary listening.

                You will also be able to visualize your progress since the app integrates monitoring capabilities. The layout and interface is nothing short of enjoyable, cheerful and charming.

                Download the app

                4. Busuu

                  Bussu is a social language learning app. It is available on the web, Android, and iOS. It currently supports 12 languages and is free.

                  Advertising

                  The functionality allows users to learn words, simple dialogues and questions related to the conversations. In addition, the dialogues are recorded by native speakers, which brings you close to the language learning experience.

                  When you upgrade, you unlock important features including course materials. The subscription is $17 a month.

                  Download the app

                  5. Babbel

                    Babbel is a subscription-based service founded in 2008. According to LinguaLift, it is a paid cousing of Duolingo. The free version comes with 40 classes, and does not require you to invest any money.

                    Each of the classes starts with with a sequential teaching of vocabulary with the help of pictures. The courses are tailor made and adapted to the students’ level, allowing the learning to be adjusted accordingly.

                    Advertising

                    If you started learning a language and stopped, Babbel will help you pick up where you started.

                    Download the app

                    Takeaways

                    All the apps recommended are tailored for different needs, whether you’re beginning to learn a language or trying to pick back up one. All of them are designed by real-life native speakers and so provide you with a more concrete learning experience.

                    Since these apps are designed to adapt to different kinds of learning styles, do check out which one is the most suitable for you.

                    Featured photo credit: Yura Fresh via unsplash.com

                    Read Next