Need to Manage Screen Time for Your Kids? Experimac Has Tips Based on the Child’s Age

Using electronic devices should be a positive and fun experience for all of the members of your family. However, it is important to understand that exposure to digital media should be limited for children. Not sure what those limitations should be? Take a look at the tips we have listed below.

Screen Time Recommendations
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) hosted a national conference where close to 10,000 pediatricians gathered to discuss the effects electronic devices have on children. When it comes to digital media exposure, children are at risk of several detrimental effects including: damages from extended screen time, exposure to inappropriate material and even cyberbullying. The AAP found that the following guidelines should be followed when determining digital media exposure:

  • Under 18 months – Infants should not be exposed at all.
  • 2-5 years old – Should be limited to one hour per day.
  • 6 years old and older – Parent discretion should be used to determine the duration as well as the content the child is exposed to online. However, originally, doctors claimed over two hours of exposure a day could be damaging.

Monitoring the time your children spend on the Internet is vital to their health and well-being biologically, as well as for their emotional well-being. With older children, the concern regarding digital media exposure is more about the material they may be exposed to. Sometimes, it can be tough to moderate their online choices. It’s important to establish trust in your child; however, keeping your children happy and safe online works best when you can maintain honesty in addition to some basic levels of protection.

Appropriate Parental Controls are Important
Parental controls may be a good option for your family if you are worried about they are exposed to online. These controls are designed to protect your children as the Internet can be a very dangerous place if not moderated. From child predators to sensitive and inappropriate information, parental controls are designed to protect your children from the dark corners of the Internet.

There is a great variety of parental controls available. There are some designed for specific ages and operating systems, and there are also more specific parental controls designed for targeted ages and purposes. Parental controls can be set up on your smart phones, tablets, laptops and other electronic devices.

Curious about what parental control options would be the best fit for your family’s needs? Call your local Experimac to find out more or stop by and we’ll be glad to discuss the best options for your family.

Protect Your Children From Digital Temptation

Protect Your Children From Digital Temptation

 

The average ago of exposure to pornography is 8. The top demographic in the porn industry is 12-17 year olds, and no, not just boys, girls as well. If that fact doesn’t give you a jolt, how about this one – the 28th most downloaded App in the Apple App Store is a photo ‘vault’ that is disguised as a calculator.  Guess what type of photos it contains.

 

It’s hard to imagine that your son or daughter might be charged with a felony before they leave high school and end up destroying their chances at success later in life.  This nightmare is a reality for parents around the country as well meaning children in dating relationships let their guard down to share pictures with their boyfriend or girlfriend that eventually end up all over school and the community.  When the authorities are brought in, the trail of devastation is long.

 

As a parent of 5 children (21, 20, 3, 3, 2) I was disturbed by these tidbits of information on a variety of levels.  When I was growing up there was no such thing as mobile devices.  Even talking to a member of the opposite sex on the phone meant I was attached to the wall by a cord and my parents could here every word I said.  Fast forward 20 years and our children have access to pornography and the opposite sex in their pocket by simply touching a button.

 

If you are a parent or a grandparent you might be asking yourself, ‘How can I protect my children from this temptation?’  Because of the easy road to pornography many of the devices and computers we have come with built in controls and restrictions.  These tools can provide peace of mind and help fill in the gaps.  Let’s face it.  We can’t always be staring over their shoulder but we can use technology to limit and monitor activity.

 

Nothing technology offers will ever replace a parent.  The best tool we have is communication and observation.  And nothing beats truly knowing what is on the hearts of our children.  But when those tools fail us or are not readily available we can use the same technology that tempts to protect.  Simply limiting tfhe amount of time a computer will operate can be enough of a deterrent.  If that’s not enough, there are options to completely restrict a mobile phone and limit it to it’s main purpose only.  Yes, you can make them simply a phone.

 

Parents and grandparents have their own style.  When I talk to parents that are dealing with pornography and the temptation of sexting I usually see two different philosophies.  One style is to give the child all the access in the beginning and then take features away and limit activity as a punishment for poor behavior.  And of course the opposite style is to limit any and all access until trust is built and freedoms are added based on preferred behavior and maturity.  the philosophy is your choice based on your style and your child’s specific situations.

 

1 Corinthians 10:13 promises God will always give us a way out of any given temptation.  While technology can be the perpetrator, it can also be the way out if you are properly trained and educated on it’s capabilities.

 

In His hands,

 

Scott Maulsby, scott.maulsby@experimac.com, 615-457-8000