10/16/2015

About Screen Time

The American Academy of Pediatrics recently announced that they are considering changes to their screen time guidelines. Previously, the AAP was against all screen time for children under two years of age. The AAP says that “In a world where ‘screen time’ is becoming simply ‘time,’ our policies must evolve or become obsolete." Their new guidelines won't be released until sometime in 2016, but people have already been talking about them, saying that the AAP has finally gotten with the program. Others (myself included at first!) feel like it almost sounds like the AAP is just copping out, as if to say, people are doing it anyway, so what difference does it make what we say?

The AAP says that their new guidelines will stress quality over quantity; also, they continue to suggest supervising your children and technology, staying involved, and integrating tech-free activities in your child's daily playtime. Here's what the AAP's website currently says about media and childrenSounds like common sense to me.

My husband and I already came to an agreement shortly after Jacob was born, and long before the news of the AAP's revision of their screen time guidelines. We're keeping technology out of his hands for as long as possible! We've seen how the flickering light from the television will catch his attention. If I go to take a picture of him, he will reach out and grab for my iPhone. (And usually just try to put it in his mouth.) But it's scary to see that technology already has that kind of effect on a kid so little!

I know that there are lots of great techie toys and educational apps out there that will greatly benefit Jacob someday. I know kids can learn a lot if given the right tools and the time to explore. So Jacob will use them... someday. But I also want our son to be a kid and use his imagination. To read and draw and play with Legos. To color the driveway with chalk and to blow bubbles. To play catch in the backyard. To stand in the kitchen and learn how to bake with his dad. To go to one of the many parks in our neighborhood and swing on the swings. To cover the dining room table with sheets and blankets to make it into a cave or a fort. 

You know... like we did when we were kids.

What do you think? Comment below!

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