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Tips for managing your children’s screen time

IB World Magazine took to Twitter to find out how IB parents are finding the right balance for their children when it comes to online learning, completing extra-curricular activities and socializing online.

Tips for managing your children’s screen time

During a time when children have to learn online, complete extra-curricular activities online and socialise online, how can parents appropriately manage and balance screen time activities?

‘Screen time’ refers to the amount of time a user spends on a device to access on-screen activities. Some activities such as online socializing and gaming can be very immersive, so consistent limits are very important. For ages two to five: one hour, broken into sessions of a maximum of 30 minutes per day is recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics. From age six and above, there are no specific screen time limits, but it should not affect physical activity and face-to-face interactions.

Unlimited screen time when used for games or interactive content can be harmful. Various research has stated that too much time spent on-screen can lead to obesity, sleep problems and behavioural problems, and it can also affect educational attainment.

So, if you needed a few ideas to encourage your children to step away from their computers, phones and consoles, and embrace the, “real world”, IB parents share their tips below…

Katelyn Uhler, Diploma Programme (DP) coordinator at Cape Coral High School in Florida (@IBMrsUhler)

Yuni Santosa, Primary Years Programme (PYP) coordinator and grade four class teacher at International School Ruhr, Germany (@YuniSantosa)

Nadine Bailey, middle school teacher, librarian and technology integrator at Western Academy of Beijing, China (@intlNadine)

“Once children pass a certain age, all you can do is try to be a good role model yourself by ensuring there is screen downtime, for example when having meals, going for walks etc, and to make sure you have a continued open dialogue about both yours and their screen time. We regularly share our statistics on our phone and comment on it”.

Mark Ryan​, Head of Specialists PYP and visual arts teacher (@RunEducator)

“Lead by example. We need to remember that we all role models (especially educators). Parents need to develop and follow rules related to devices alongside their children. You need to model how people interact and share experiences, i.e eye contact. My top tips are to make a habit of putting your device away during meetings and during conversations with teachers and parents. Also, please discuss the rules of devices with young people and follow the rules together”.

Marina Hastuti (@ademarina)

Leticia Carino, health education teacher at International School of Phnom Penh in Cambodia (@leticarino)

Yuni Santosa, PYP coordinator and grade four class teacher at International School Ruhr, Germany (@YuniSantosa)

Jaye (@YiJiechan)

Jennifer Victor (@JenVictor128)

Amy Kan lives in Singapore but is a DP student at a school in the UK (@amyckan)

Ida Tagoe, teacher at Cornerstone International Academy in Ghana (@TracyTagoe1)

Hiba Bizri, PYP visual arts instructor at Houssam Eddine Hariri High School in Lebanon (@BizriHiba)

What tips do you use to manage your child’s screen time? Let us know in the comments👇🏼

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