What to say to your child so that he does not become addicted to screens

What to say to your child so that he does not become addicted to screens

Do you have trouble keeping calm when you see your youngest (again) sitting in front of the television? Know that certain phrases can help them have a healthy relationship with digital tools. Explanations.

At a restaurant, in the car or simply at home: it’s difficult to keep your little ones in place. The easy solution is often to take out the tablet to (hope) to have a few minutes of respite. A rather short-term strategy, when we know that high consumption of screens leads to serious behavioral problems.

To moderate screen time… just talk to your children

According to Richard Culatta, CEO of ISTE (International Society for Technology in Education), “How we talk to our children about using technology can have a huge impact on their ability to become intelligent, well-rounded adults“, he explains to CNBC.

After years of researching the best way to moderate children’s screen time, the specialist discovered that certain specific phrases, whispered to children, allowed toddlers to occupy themselves differently.

Instead of saying “you’re addicted to your phone” to his child, Richard Culatta advises to phrase things differently, by targeting the problem: “It looks like you haven’t exercised yet today” or “I noticed you haven’t spent time with your family since you got home from school; let’s do it a little to balance the way you spend your day“.

The notion of time should not be put before

Another criticism, not very constructive and which needs to be rephrased: the famous sentence “You’ve been playing this game too long.”.

Not only is the notion of time not concrete among toddlers (it is only from the age of 4 that notions of time begin to be acquired, editor’s note), but in addition it is not necessarily valid in terms of screen time (no to video games, but yes to three-hour films?).

Richard Culatta therefore advocates using this speech instead:

It seems like this game gets more attention than it deserves, considering it’s primarily based on repetition and luck“.

Finally, instead of saying, “stop sitting in front of the computer all day“(Stop sitting makes no sense for a child who is offered an alternative activity that involves just as much sitting“, he explains) the expert again recommends diverting the child’s attention by focusing on the real problem.

For example, saying: “Why don’t we go for a walk together?”

Of course, listening to the child and making him talk, before lecturing him, allows him to feel taken into account and to accept frustration (here, keeping him away from screens).