Smart devices and large electronics have a unique way of capturing your little one’s undivided attention. The downside to this situation is how easily they zone in for hours on end. If you’re grasping at straws to get your little ones to do more activities and focus on the moments in front of them, there are various practical ways to reduce your toddler’s screen time.
Create Tech-Free Spaces
More than likely, your little one has a designated space at home where they can freely play with their toys and gadgets. If you denote that space as tech-free, you encourage them to play with their toys rather than a device. There may be some initial pushback regarding a lack of tech time, but this is an effective way to reduce overall screen time through enough time and support.
Consider Open-Ended Activities
Open-ended activities are an excellent way to encourage a larger block of time dedicated to something developmentally friendly. Things like building blocks designed for your child’s age group are an affordable and creative way to introduce this playing style. They come in all shapes and sizes, so you can find a set of blocks that speaks to your child’s interests.
Parental Control Features
Every smart device has the option to control or monitor the activity. This is an excellent solution for those who prefer their children to use their screen time wisely. Setting these boundaries can create a sense of balance around their viewing content, exposure and accessibility. Additionally, this can enable you to teach them healthy use of technology without replacing it altogether.
Model Healthy Tech Use as a Parent
Much of what children learn is through watching it happen. Generally, children will emulate their parents’ behaviors and actions, and because of this, it’s vital to establish and model healthy tech use. If they see you on your devices 90 percent of the day, they will think this is acceptable and do it, too.
When children begin to show interest in one activity, it can quickly turn into a hobby. The challenge of young children picking up a hobby is that they tend to lose patience relatively quickly.
If you can support these hobbies and interests at a young age, you can foster their curiosity and divert their attention from their other distractions. Most hobbies require a little bit of background work to enjoy fully. So this is a practical way to reduce your toddler’s screen time and help them showcase new talents and interests.