That's right. How to keep your kids off their phones all summer long!
Do you think it is possible, to keep your kids off their phones and devices all summer long? I DO, and I know it is 100% possible for you too! My kids are 11, 9, 7, and 5, and they do not have personal phones, tablets, computers, or video games. We do watch movies and some TV, with limits.
If you haven’t looked around lately, kids are buried in their phones. They are so engrossed in their phones that they are getting hit by cars for not paying attention, causing car accidents while driving, missing human interaction, not listening to parents, friends, teachers, coaches… and just... it's annoying to see, right?
Don't give up yet, let me show you how you can do it!
#1: Keep Them Busy!
We know that if you keep a child busy, they don't have much time to think about anything else. Summer is a great time to go to a summer camp, sports camp, play outside, scavenger hunt, swimming, hiking, fishing, art camp... anything really, its better if you can keep them outside and hide the devices.. "Out of sight, out of mind". Hide the devices, and expect them to ask for them for the first few days. However, be strong and don't hand them over when it gets tough. We took away all of our devices in 2020 when everything shut down and we were home. We focused on family time and making memories as a family. It was the best thing I have EVER DONE for my family, taking away those devices. It was hard, we had withdraws and meltdowns... it wasn't pleasant, but what it brought is priceless!
#2: Play With Them!
This is one that parents always sigh about... you love your child, but sometimes you don't want to play with them. It is important for parents to set time to play with their children. I love what the Child Development Institute says on their website about play - "playing with kids builds a bond that will last forever. It lets the child know he or she is loved and appreciated. It opens the door for sharing problems and concerns when the need arises. It helps the parent get to know and under the uniqueness of each child. It is also great stress reducer for overworked parents."
#3: Let Them Be Bored!
This one gets people scratching their head, but I promise you.. they get clever! I have also seen when my children are bored, they try harder to be nice to each other, so they can play something together. Win-Win right? I have seen my children's relationships change for the better by having to work harder to have a friend to play with. If your child is bored, I know they will find something to do. My kids like to do art, play the piano, play sports outside together, build epic towers, learn new recipes, and the list can go on! (This can get messy, but it's all part of it. You might need to allow some messes)
#4: Provide Resources For Them!
It does NOT take much to keep a kid happy! My kids love a new pack of markers and white paper, and they get creative. One child made me a book all about Snakes, another one draws pictures of her family, one is learning how to hold the pens correctly and write her name. My boys LOVE playing wiffle ball outside, and love when neighbors come over to join in. You might need to make some play dough, pick up some board games, allow some messes (that will be picked up by your kiddos), and let the imagination get to work!
Like I mentioned earlier, we do watch some TV and movies. I keep a tight eye on what TV shows because now-a-days, you never know what commercials will pop up, so we usually stick to our beloved classic movies and set time each day for NO TV TIME, and TV Time. The major key here is TIME-LIMITS!
So.. are you willing to give it a try? I want you to know I am doing it with you. I am here doing the same thing with my 4 kiddos this summer. Make those summer memories, you won't regret them!
Please reach out to me with questions, and if you are feeling overwhelmed. I would LOVE to help cheer you on!