The most important time in a child’s development is during the formative years of kindergarten. Kindergarten prepares a child for his or her academic schooling. It also assists him or her in developing socialization skills and enhancing physical mobility. Therefore, the kindergarten program that you select is critical to your child’s later performance in the classroom.
However, parents must address the distractions made by today’s technology, as well. In the past, parents only needed to veer children away from the TV screen. However, children are exposed to more than one display today. Like adults, they can become almost mesmerized when gazing at electronic devices. This can take away from their attention span, as far as group participation and off-screen learning.
Therefore, in this respect, parents need to establish clear boundaries for their children about screen use for the newer technologies. One of the ways that this can be done is to involve children in hands-on activities. It is important to cultivate a child’s imagination. So, he or she should use non-electronic media and toys to avoid electronic reliance.
Promote Independent Play
If you want to avoid excess electronic use, then you need, as a parent, to promote independent play in your children. However, that does not mean that you should serve as your child’s monitor in this respect. You can subtly make your point known by adding hands-on toys and accessories for your child’s playtime.
Another way to inspire more creative expression is to read to your child at night. This will not only help and encourage your child to learn to read but it also very effectively engages their imaginations. Another good idea could be to encourage your kids to listen to podcasts and audiobooks to direct them to learning activities on electronics.
Work with the Curriculum Director at Your Child’s Kindergarten
Talk to the curriculum director at an international kindergarten in Bangkok about screen-time concerns. That way, both of you can work in sync to avoid the wrong types of on-screen activities. As you know, your child has access to a variety of screen types in today’s mobile society. For instance, your child may occupy his or her time by looking at your mobile phone or by watching movies on a tablet.
Sometimes, computer games take up a child’s time or games that are not as computerized. As long as your child is using their electronics for creative, or educational then the occasional recreational game should by no means out of the question. How much time a child looks at a screen will depend on the nature of the electronic, as well as the activity.
Is Your Child Overweight?
When children spend too much time playing computer games, then this can leave them with less time for physical activities and can end up gaining weight and having problems with obesity as a result. Therefore, the use of today’s electronics must be carefully moderated. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), excessive use of media can lead to a number of behavioral problems and disorders. These conditions can surface in the form of the following:
- Eating disorders
- Problems with sleep
- Problems with learning in school Weight gain
The reasons above is why it is important that the kindergarten and parents work at creating a balance in a child’s life. Doing so will increase a child’s chance to socialize, play outside, read, or create imaginative scenarios.
What Is Meant by “Excessive”?
Given that most everyone uses some type of electronic today, you may be wondering what defines “excessive.” Indeed, this can be hard to define, as kids use electronic to play video games, text on the phone, socialize on social media, and play handheld games.
You can easily say that use is too much if it interferes with a child’s other activities. If your child is suffering from sleep issues or has problems with socializing with the kids in his kindergarten class, you may have a problem on your hands.
Before you have to face any of these dilemmas, it is important to set screen limits now and not wait. Why should you set boundaries when your child’s behavior is unacceptable? The best way to instill the right behavior from your child is to set a good example yourself. If you want to set limits, you also have to set your own limits in this respect. A child will find it difficult to understand a parent who constantly uses the computer themselves.
Set Limits with Your Child
To limit your child’s use of electronic, set specific days and times when viewing a screen is off-limits. This might be imposed after dinner or when friends visit at your house. This helps a child learn the etiquette involved in using electronics. After all, it is rude for child to stare at a screen when guests are in the house.
Also, take note of what your kids are doing with those screens. You may need to learn more about the video games that draw their attention and actually play one yourself. You need to take a proactive stance. Otherwise, you will not be able to communicate your wishes adequately.
It is also important to promote variety when your child does play a game. Direct your child’s attention so he engages in more than one activity and more than one type of activity to ensure they develop a wide range of physical, mental and logic skills.
Convey Your Concerns
When you establish the rules, speak to your kids about your concerns. Tell them that it is important to be reasonable about how much time they spend on an electronic. They should understand the negative results of spending too much time on one activity.
The idea is to be vigilant while also being flexible. Whatever rules you outline, stick to your guidelines. Let your kids know what rules they need to follow. Also, as your children grow, learn to adapt to the changes of the technology. That way you can adjust the rules as necessary.
By avoiding these effects of electronic overindulgence, children will experience more success in the kindergarten classroom and will fare better at home as well. When you can show a good example to your child in this respect, he or she will follow suit.
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