Parenting

Are you losing your kids to their smartphones/video games/internet?

While doing bargain hunting in Divisoria, I saw this two-year old kid swiping like a pro on his mother’s mobile phone.

At a young age, he probably knows how to play Mobile Legend than me.

Gadget

Gadget boy. Maneuvering his mom’s smartphone like a pro.

Here is my A Dose of Ramedy today:

Connect more with your kids.

According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, excessive media (gadgets) use can lead to attention problems, difficulties in school, sleep and eating disorders, and obesity.

Last July 2017, our Light Group (LG) served in the Feast Bay Area Couples’ Ministry’s empowering seminar on how to raise kids in the digital age at Lorenzo Mission Institute, San Carlos Seminary.

“Gadgets can never replace the role we parents have in our children’s lives,” shared by Michelle A. Alignay, MA, RP, RGC – a family life specialist, author, psychologist, guidance counselor, lecturer as she emphasized the importance of prioritizing parents’ relationships with their children in the digital age. Parents should be positive persons that children can relate to.

Here are some tips and strategies shared by the resource speaker:

Be role models. Walk your talk. If you impose a no-gadgets rule at the dinner table, then be sure that it starts with you.

Understand the development and personality of each of your children. Young children and teens, for instance, have different needs. Provide them with what is appropriate to their age and development stage. Gauge how they are growing and evolving. The content and exposure of kids to social media vary greatly depending on their development.

Unplug and play. Real-life play is the most important psychological need of children and teens that greatly affects their socio-emotional, and even physical and mental well-being. They become active and creative, plus the fun they derive from these activities is immeasurable. If given a choice between real-life play versus gadget, steer them toward real life. There should always be a balance between the two.

Teach kids to be “critical media literates.” We can’t shield them from what social media and the wired world has to offer all the time. In such cases, we need to help them in honing their critical and logical thinking capacity. You may try exposing them to some “mild” forms of inappropriate media, and ask them how they feel and think about it. That way, you are also gauging their insights on how media is affecting them. Make media images as teaching moments.

Be clear on guidelines and the limits you give them. Social media and gadget management is really all about parenting. If we allow them to have some gadget time, we have to explain to them their responsibilities and what we’re expecting from them. If they do not abide by the well-meaning guidelines you’ve set, then choose to apply apt consequences. Try limiting their gadget hours and imposing no-gadget days.

On her closing note, Alignay said: “What really works in managing your family’s social media use? Ironically enough, a broadband ad says it best: The strongest connections are at home!”

Have a blessed day!

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