Balancing Screen Time

In today’s digital age, screens are an inescapable part of children’s lives and devices can offer many educational and recreational benefits. However, excessive screen time can lead to negative effects on children’s physical health, mental well-being, and their social skills.

According to a report by Common Sense Media1, children under 8 years old spend an average of over 2 hours a day on screens, and this number jumps dramatically for older children, often surpassing 7 hours daily excluding educational use.

Not all screen time is created equal and ‘passive’ screen time such as watching TV can be more detrimental due to its sedentary nature, whereas ‘interactive’ screen time like video chatting with family can be more stimulating and enriching. Regardless of type, moderation is key and there are lots of things you can do to reduce screen time.

Ideas to Reduce Screen Time

  • Establish Screen-Free Zones – Make certain areas of the home are screen-free, like bedrooms and kitchen tables.
  • Encourage Other Interests – Get children involved in activities that don’t involve screens, such as reading, sports, cooking, and arts and crafts.
  • Lead by Example – Model good screen habits yourself by limiting your own screen time where you can, especially around younger children.
  • Family Time Without Screens – Plan family activities together that don’t involve screens, like board games, walking in the park, or learning a new dance routine together.
  • Keep a Routine – Include fun activities like dancing and drama classes in your child’s weekly routine so that they’ve always got a guaranteed screen-free activity to look forward to every week.

If you’re stuck, we think that performing arts activities are a great way to balance children’s screen time. Our classes are screen-free which makes sure that children get a much-needed break and enrich not just physical well-being but also emotional and social development. By integrating performing arts into their routines, children can enjoy a balanced, active lifestyle and carry these positive habits into adulthood.

  1. Common Sense Media, 2017, THE COMMON SENSE CENSUS: Media use by Kids Age Zero to Eight.