“The latest report from Common Sense Media confirms what many of us know intuitively: Entertainment media use grew faster in the last two years than it did in the four years before the pandemic. While many of us didn’t think it was possible to cram more entertainment screen time into our waking hours, we somehow managed to do so in 2021.”
What Is Screen Time?
We’ve Been Worried about It Since the Introduction of TV
Computers Accelerated the Issue (1980s and 1990s)
Gaming Devices, Cellphones, and Smartphones Put It All on Steroids
And Then There Was a Pandemic …
What Impact Has All of This Had on Your Screen Time?
Common Sense Media Report
** Tweens spend an average of 5.5 hours on entertainment media
** Teens spend over 8 hours
** Social media users are getting younger: 40% of children between 8 and 12 are on social media platforms
** Some significant variations based on gender, race, and family income
** Lower-income tweens spend as much as 3 hours more each day on entertainment media
Smartphone Usage in 2021
** 37% of 11-year-olds use a smartphone
** 91% of 14-year-olds
** You can get a Pinwheel phone for your child to help with screentime management
Screen Time Recommendations by The American Academy of Pediatrics
Infants/toddlers, ages 0–2 years: No screen time exposure for infants and toddlers. The only exception: Connecting with loved ones on a screen.
Children ages 2–5 years: Up to one hour per day of high-quality screen time.
Do not use technology as a babysitter
In 2016, researchers found that babies (0–2 years) spend 42 minutes per day on screens, and children (3–4 years) spend two hours 40 minutes per day on screens.
Most parents teach their child how to use a touchscreen by age two.
Screen time usage per day was too high before the pandemic. It is even higher, now.
Positive Benefits of Non-Screen Play
Development of imagination
Cooperation and conflict resolution
Possible Negative Consequences
** Posture and Bone Development
** Body image / Dysmorphia
** Anger and Hostility
** Suicidal ideation
Responses and Solutions
Above all, balance
Focusing on content may be more important than screen time
Parents serving as good role models
** Distracted parenting is a real phenomenon
Delay use of screens as long as possible
“Wait Until Eighth” Campaign
Create screen-free spaces within the home
Separate space for art, crafts, reading, board games, etc.
Seek out seratonin
** Waldeinsamkeit – the feeling of solitude in the forest
** Shinrin-yoku – “forest-bathing”
** Friluftsliv – “open-air living”
Set essential boundaries to promote:
** Real-World Activities
** Mental Health and Self-Esteem
Consistency Is Very Helpful to Both Kids and Adults
Help children understand the business model of social media
Help children put social media interactions in context
Coping with Boredom Is a Life Skill and a Pathway to Creativity