Did you know that most parents spend more than nine hours glued to their mobile phones? That’s not including the hours spent at work. How about you? Do you spend three? Four? Five? You might be underestimating it.
Yes, you read that right. According to a report published by Common Sense Media, even you might be spending up to nine hours on your screen.
James P. Steyer, the CEO of Common Sense Media, was surprised with the survey results. “These findings are fascinating because parents are using media for entertainment just as much as their kids, yet they express concerns about their kids’ media use while also believing that they are good role models for their kids.”
Of the parents surveyed, 78% said they are good role models with regards to social media and internet use, but the survey found otherwise. Those parents who are the most strict with their children tend to be more lenient on themselves when it comes to screen time.
“Children are great mimics, which is why it is so important that parents introduce real boundaries and balance early on,” Steyer said. “Media will always be a part of life, and every family is different, but in general, we recommend that parents set rules and clear plans so that kids understand what is appropriate.”
For the most part, parents share a positive view on the effects of technology in their children’s schoolwork, learning, and further development. The survey found 94% support the use of internet and other media for homework and research. A majority also believes that technology helps their children acquire new skills, and, when looking to the future, 89% agree that technology today will prepare their children for the workplace of tomorrow.
Still, they are concerned that their children are addicted to technology and many of them worry that the use of mobile phone negatively affects their children’s sleep.
Balance is important. So is setting a good example. As parents, we should instill the appropriate screen time habits in our kids. But, perhaps the first step is to be aware of our own screen time habits.
We might ask ourselves, “How much is too much? How do we teach our kids to not heavily rely on their mobile devices?” All our questions will be answered if we start within ourselves. If we use technology the right way, then, for sure, our kids will follow our lead. Always try to set a good example before it is too late to repair the harms that may come from the many digital disruptions around us.