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Tuesday, October 6, 2015

New Screentime Recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics. My Thoughts.

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Finally! The American Academy of Pediatrics has updated their stance on screentime.  The new guidelines are better than the previously outdated ones which I critique here, here, and here, but there is still room for improvement. They continue to miss mark when it comes to the power of screens to make global connections, build learning networks, and bring people closer together.
(AP Photo/Gerald Herbert, File)
Here are some counter-points to consider.
Don’t Set Limits
The AAP suggests parents should set limits. While that might seem like good advice, it does little to empower young people to think about making good decisions for themselves. Rather than setting limits, talk to kids about what they care about and want to accomplish and help them figure out the best ways to do that.
Attentive Parenting Might Involve Screens
The AAP says attentive parenting requires face time away from screens. What it really means is that parents need to spend time with their kids. That might very well involve screens. Maybe you read a book aloud from a screen. Perhaps you recreate a building in Minecraft together. Perhaps you are a parent that travels and you facetime with your child (via a screen). Time away from screens is not the answer. Time being attentive to your child in their worlds with or away from screens is what is important.
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