Being surrounded by a plethora of screens has made us so dependent that imagining a life without them is impossible. From adults to young ones, it slowly crept into every aspect of our lives. As tempting as it is for adults, it is compelling for kids.
While they can be an excellent source of information and are proven educational tools, various studies have revealed that excessive screen time may be associated with negative outcomes for children's cognitive, emotional, and physical health.
With the advancement of technology and ease of access to digital devices, the importance of encouraging children to read books and learn offline instead of relying solely on electronic devices have become a necessity.
Here are 7 tips to limit kids' screen time and promote their cognitive development in a healthy way.
1. Make reading a daily habit:
Kids should be encouraged to set aside time every day apart from their school schedule for reading. Assigning a specific time, such as before bed, after an evening snack, or before going to play outside with friends in the evening, can go a long way. Setting a schedule for reading will eventually lead to a lifelong habit that will come in handy not only in academics, but in other domains of life as well.
2. Lead kids by example:
Children are more likely to imitate those around them and that’s how they learn. This is a pro parenting technique that almost every parent swears by. You can sit with your kids, read them a story, engage them in conversation, and ask for their opinion in between reads or later on. This will keep them interested, engaged, and they will look forward to learning more with you.
3. Create a reading-friendly environment:
Making a conducive environment that is free from distractions such as screens, toys, and electronics will help kids stay put. Setting up a comfortable and quiet reading area in your home with comfortable seating and good lighting will help kids concentrate and encourage them to learn.
4. Limit screen time:
Give them a more worthwhile way to spend their time by encouraging them to engage in other non-screen activities like reading, playing outside, or spending time with friends and family. This will assist parents in limiting their children's screen time and fostering their social growth.
5. Visit the library and book fairs:
Another fun option is visiting libraries, book fairs and participating in reading programmes and activities. This can help foster a love of reading by exposing your child to a wide range of genres, new topics, and interests.
6. Encourage kids to share:
Encourage your child to share what they are reading with others, such as friends, family, or classmates. This can help foster a sense of community and promote a love of reading. It will also help you keep track of what they are learning and what their interests are.
7. Make learning fun:
Encourage your child to pick books that they'll enjoy and make reading a fun and engaging activity for them. You can use props such as puppets, puzzles, and costumes, or have them engage in various activities that promote learning while keeping them entertained.
To summarise, screen-free reading has numerous benefits for children, including improved comprehension and retention, increased vocabulary and language skills, development of imagination and creativity, reduction of screen time, and improvement of social and emotional skills. Use our suggestions to encourage children to read instead of relying solely on screens for education and entertainment while promoting their cognitive, emotional, and social development.
Check out Majestic Book Club’s page for fun and educational resources, plus many more!