I’m just going to put it out there, I hate the term ‘Screen Time’ – It drives me mental.
When I hear parents and teachers talking about how much ‘screen time’ a child should have in their life I honestly feel panicked.
Are we really still there?
How can we possibly bunch everything that a child can achieve on a device into one category?
I love technology but I also want my kids to have as much of a free-range-analogue-childhood as possible. I like to go retro, I like them to be bored, I like them to learn with their hands and tie knots (the most useful of clichés.) I want for them the same things my parents wanted for me; to be capable and interested and independent humans.
And to do that they need to learn to use tools to their advantage – from books to drills to smartphones. And I feel like the phrase ‘screen time’ is just so frustratingly unhelpful. It’s time to move on.
All screens are not created equal.
When you teach your child to use technology that needs to be the first lesson. There are so many skills that kids can learn through playing with apps. Like, how are we feeling about an app that teaches children the names of all the continents? What about one that explores basic maths and literacy concepts? Are we really going to put this ‘screen time’ in the same category as watching creepy voiced adults open Kinder Surprise Eggs on YouTube?
I really do believe that screens are neutral; it’s what you put on them that’s good or bad.