As homemakers, we set the tone in our home, with the hope that we are creating a peaceful and healthy refuge for each member of our family.
But, I have seen a trend that is disturbing. I have seen it first hand. Some of YOU may be participating in this trend. I am not here to judge, but I am here to hopefully change your thinking.
Connected devices don’t make a connected family. Let that sink in for a moment.
You are in the grocery store and your child begins acting like a heathen, yelling and carrying on. Now a days, in response, many parents hand their child a phone or tablet to quell the tantrum. Sure, it quiets your child down, but what has your child gained from this? It was not the knowledge to do the right thing, it was not discipline, but he learned that if he yells loud enough, he will get something fun to do. So, in essence, you are enabling such behavior.
Discipline will always be the correct answer, whatever that means for you –spanking, a slap to the wrist, a scolding. That isn’t for me to decide. You know what works best for your children.
Educational Screen Time
There are so many learning programs out there, such as ABC Mouse that can be very beneficial to children. This includes educational channels on television, such as Baby First TV etc. However, many parents are of the belief that it automates their job of teaching. It does not.
For a number of reasons this is wrong. For one thing, many parents are using this technology from the standpoint of a baby sitter, placing them for hours in front of a screen. Children’s brains can absorb so much, and the tv screen or apps are just limiting. They can not replace the interaction of parent, it cannot teach right from wrong.
For another thing, it cannot teach social interaction. People buried in their screens are missing on tangible realities, tangible love.It does not get the child up and moving with other children. (And hello….obesity is a huge problem.) Studies show that children who watch too much t.v. are more likely to be obese and allow unhealthy eating habits.
With the ever improving technology, it has become a daily part of our lives. As mothers and wives, it is now time to look at ourselves. We need to ensure that our families actually connect.
Before the advent of cell phones, if the phone rang at dinner, it was against the rules to answer. (This was true in our home.)
Maybe enact that sort of rule with your family. No cell phones or other technology at the dinner table.
If you look upon your family and they are in a tech rut, all spaced off on their devices, maybe it is time for a change. You are, after all, the parent.
On a personal level I have seen a parent complain about their child’s phone use and do nothing about it because “I can’t do that to him. All his friends have phones.” I thought to myself “parents are not supposed to be their child’s best friend. They are suppose to guide them.”
So you may be wondering how to reconnect your family.
1. Family game night
2. Family outings
3. Family dinners….AT THE TABLE
4. Baking or cooking together
5. Family movie nights
These are simple suggestions, but it is never too late to change the dynamic of your home. With all of these, require that everyone must put their phone away or in a tech basket, not to be used during family time.
Technology can be a good thing. But things are good in MODERATION, which young people especially have a hard time understanding. That is why we as parents must lead the way.