Kids today are bombarded with more technology than any generation that has ever existed. While many modern devices enrich our lives, they can have a negative effect on us when our lives begin to revolve around them. This is particularly true for kids since they are more likely to spend too much time staring at their smartphones, tablets, or the TV screen while they play their favorite video games.
There is a lot of content that is not suitable for kids online, and it has also created a new form of harassment called cyberbullying.
That doesn’t mean these modern devices are all bad. Smartphones and other modern tech also make life easier for you as a parent. It allows you to reach your kids at any time and some apps even allow you to track them via GPS!
When it comes to many of these modern devices, moderation is always key. There’s nothing wrong with a kid catching up with their friends or de-stressing by playing a video game for an hour. What you don’t want is for your child to do these things all day long.
Here are some effective ways to get your children off the couch and away from all those screens without them even noticing what you are trying to do:
1) Sign Them Up For Martial Arts
Most children are captivated by martial arts when they are introduced to it. What’s there not to like? Martial arts is fun and no two classes are ever the same. Your children will get to interact with children of all ages and new besties are quickly made.
Martial arts get your children to improve their personal fitness while learning cool techniques they will be able to use to defend themselves for the rest of their lives. It also teaches them many important life lessons like discipline, perseverance, respect and thinking logically under pressure.
Your children will get to learn all that while having a lot of fun. You will never have to force them to go to their martial arts classes. It is an activity they will look forward to and they will be the ones putting down their phones and reminding you that it’s time to go to the martial arts gym.
Learning a martial art prepares a child for all the things they will face at school and later on in life. They will be more confident because of their training, and that makes them less likely to be victims of bullying at school. Their interaction with children of all ages at the dojo gives them an opportunity to improve their social skills. This is particularly important for children who are having a hard time making friends at school.
2) Encourage Them To Have Hobbies Or Be Part Of Extracurricular Activities
Most schools offer many extracurricular activities, and there are bound to be some your children enjoy. Encourage them to sign of up for things they are interested in like swimming, basketball, and gymnastics. It allows the child to form social bonds with their peers without the use of any technology.
It also keeps them from becoming bored with their daily routine – which is one of the reasons kids spend so much time on their smartphones or playing video games.
3) Schedule More Family Time
Scheduling more family time allows you to observe your child’s habits and determine if they might be spending too much time on their smartphones or other distractions. If that happens to be the case, you can ban the use of technology when you are all together. Just make sure you follow your own rules and set a good example.
Family time should go past meals. You can come up with fun games and activities the entire family will enjoy or stream your favorite movies. Enjoying technology with your children helps to teach them how to use it responsibly.
4) Assign Some Chores
Your children will have to put down their devices for a while when performing chores around the house, and it helps to build their sense of responsibility. It also makes life a lot easier for you as a parent, so make sure each child has at least one thing they are responsible for around the home each day.
If possible, try to get everyone in the home to perform their chores at the same time. That way you can set a good example for them and the entire family can have fun listening to music while cleaning up.
5) Make Fitness A Part Of Their Daily Routine
As the saying goes, ‘a healthy body leads to a healthy mind.’ Children who are physically fit are less likely to develop the emotional issues that often leads to a child wanting to zone out in front of a screen in the first place.
Always look for ways to keep them active. If it is safe for them to walk or ride a bike to school each day, encourage them to do so. If a child has a competitive spirit, encourage them to take part in organized sports. The more active your children are, the more likely they are to grow up to be happy adults with self-control.
6) Set Boundaries
You are the parent, after all, so set some boundaries if you think your child spends too much time online or playing video games. Just make sure you are reasonable with your boundaries. Setting unreasonable boundaries is more likely to make the child rebel and look for ways to do these things behind your back.
Allow your children to enjoy the things they like, just put time limits on them. For example, an hour of video games after finishing their homework.
A good way to get a child to understand how valuable time is in life is by showing them other things they could be doing. That’s why it’s so important to encourage the child to take part in different activities since it lets them know how much fun they could be having doing other things that are more beneficial to them.
If your child is glued to their smartphone or video game console, give martial arts a go to see if it’s the answer to helping them find fun elsewhere. Sign up for a trial class today!
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