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How much screen time should my child be allowed per day?

According to The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry,


"Until 18 months of age limit screen use to video chatting along with an adult (for example, with a parent who is out of town).

  • Between 18 and 24 months screen time should be limited to watching educational programming with a caregiver.

  • For children 2-5, limit non-educational screen time to about 1 hour per weekday and 3 hours on the weekend days.

  • For ages 6 and older, encourage healthy habits and limit activities that include screens.

  • Turn off all screens during family meals and outings.

  • Learn about and use parental controls.

  • Avoid using screens as pacifiers, babysitters, or to stop tantrums.

  • Turn off screens and remove them from bedrooms 30-60 minutes before bedtime."

Source: https://www.aacap.org/AACAP/Families_and_Youth/Facts_for_Families/FFF-Guide/Children-And-Watching-TV-054.aspx



What activities can we do instead of screens?


Please see the following excerpts from https://www.apa.org/monitor/2020/04/cover-kids-screens:


“The number one recommendation that we give to parents is [to] spend time engaged with their kids,” Lasser says. “It’s simple, it’s good parenting and it promotes a healthy relationship.”

  1. Children under age 2 don’t learn from screens as well as they do from live interactions.

  2. Co-viewing media with parents can protect young kids against many downsides of screen time.

  3. Television viewing time is correlated with obesity in youth.

  4. Meeting sleep, screen time and physical activity guidelines is associated with the best mental health outcomes in teens, but few adolescents meet all three.

Additional resources:

https://www.firstthingsfirst.org/first-things/television-videos-dont-help-young-children-learn-new-words/#:~:text=Watching%20television%20or%20videos%20%E2%80%93%20even,people%2C%20not%20TV%20or%20videos.

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