Digital parenting

Parenting: How not to battle over screen time this half term

Teens, children and screen time - advice for parents during the half term holidays

February 11, 2022

Half term is here, and whilst it’s great for our children to have a much deserved break, it can also turn into an endless battle over screen time. As a digital wellbeing organisation, we speak to thousands of parents each week, and we know how easy it is to rely on devices to keep our children entertained while we get things done. And with all the fantastic benefits tech has to offer, trying to find a happy tech-life balance at home during the holidays can sometimes be tricky.

So, here are three mindful tech tips to help swerve those painful negotiations and make life this half term a little more peaceful.

1. Communicate expectations early

Early on, agreeing on some healthy tech routines helps set the pace for the week ahead. Let them know what you are comfortable with them doing or not doing, from gaming to phone use. Lay all the tech cards on the table! Encourage your child to come up with their own ideas for healthy tech use during their time off and make it a whole family effort.

2. Focus on what’s happening off-screen

As much as we could all benefit from a digital detox, avoiding screens altogether is near impossible nowadays. So instead of focusing on time spent on devices, we recommend prioritising social events, exercise, quality sleep and eating well - and then scheduling screen time around that.

3. Merge tech time with family time

Why not plan a family movie night? Can you think of a Netflix classic that you’ll all love? Set some time aside for a family FaceTime with cousins, challenge your kids to a FIFA tournament or get Mario Kart out for some nostalgic ganming! There are lots of ways you can all get involved, so that tech time can be fun for everyone.

What’s most important is that whatever your child is doing, creating, watching or sharing, it’s enjoyable, age-appropriate and safe.

Happy half term all!

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