19th March 2018

Screen time to kids: Yay or Nay

By Jinal Gada

Today, with the digital technology ruling all over the world, more people are making use of it. You may be surprised to know that the digital and internet world has not failed to lure young children too. More and more little children are seen using smart phones, tablets, and laptops than the earlier generations. Although, learning the digital way has taken a new dimension, how far is it safe? Here is my take on giving screen time to children.

If you give screen time to your child and you are happy with it – I would suggest you to leave this page and not go further because I am going to be against your thoughts then.

How does a child learn?

When I wasn’t a mother, I used to often see kids work on tablets and smart phones like a pro. I had the false impression that this would make my child to be very smart in the future. But as time passed by and I became a mother, I realised that screen time does more harm than benefit to the child. As a teacher and mother, I strongly feel children learn more through

  • Imitating what they see around the environment
  • Fine and energetic movement
  • Sensory experience
  • Touch and feel

When a young child sees something on screen, although it looks attractive it does not teach a child anything. It does not give him/her the ability to learn through touch and feel, or through sensory experience. Young children need to learn and express through play and other physical activities.

You may also like to read My Take on Giving Freedom to Kids

Listed below are some of the effects of screen time on children according to me

1} Anti-social behaviour

Today, anti-social behaviour has become increasingly common among both children and adults. This is solely due to excessive on-screen time. Screen time makes children anti-social and make them lose the ability to mingle with people and their environment. Although it is difficult to manage a child in social big gatherings, it is advised that you run around him and make him adjusted to the environment. I too have faced this difficult situation plenty of times, but I prefer running around to manage my child rather than give him a phone to sit quiet.

Baby wearing has been a boon to me at social gatherings. Read Baby wearing and its Benefits.

2} Addictive

Smart phones and tablets are very attractive and instantly engage children. I have many mom friends who have shared that they gave screen time to their children so that they would keep quiet in gatherings or eat easily. But beware, this can become addictive to your child. Infact, those mom friends have then come and said their children don’t eat without screen or they just don’t want to leave screen. In my opinion, even limited screen time is not good for your little one.

3} Overstimulating

The first thing we need to understand is seeking information does not relate to learning. Although screen time gives a lot of information, you child cannot learn well through it. Learning for children is through touching, feeling, and exploring. I strongly feel, information can be relayed later to my child. I am in no hurry to teach my child anything faster than his age.


4} Kills creativity

It is a proven fact that screen time kills the creativity within a child. When a child hears something, he relates to it with his imagination. However, when a child sees something on screen, his creative imagination is killed. I prefer my son to roam around the whole house, explore, and use his imagination to play.

That’s my take on screen time for children. I am sure many mothers may agree with me. If you agree with this, it is high time you make a change. Let your children remain children until they grow up.