Sunday, 2 April 2017

Are we raising multi-dimensional kids or media absorbed??

Raising muti-dimensional kids rather media absorbed

Excess of everything is bad , I have been raised listening to this mantra. I remember I used to take permission from my mom to switch on the TV, to remind u all, those were the days when we had landline connections rather mobile phones. Later , mobile phones were introduced but with very less features .
·    These days I observe kids with their heads down, all looking at their individual hand-held screens, physically they seem to be with each other but mentally they are immersed into those screens. It is very important for us to raise multi-dimensional kids rather  media-absorbed. And the irony is that Parents feel outsmarted or overwhelmed by their children’s computer and internet abilities. They don’t see the repercussions and later repent.
·     I remember how my new born loved listening to Lenka, that whenever she cried we played that song and later it became a habit , it went on to videos, movies. Now she is 2 ,she cries for watching TV, she wants phone everytime but as I am aware now, I try to engage her in one or the other stuff.
·     I want my child to be engaged in the real world rather staring at a virtual world. I am sure each one of you out there wants the same. We ought to spent quality time with our kids.Today children are struggling with things like ADHD or cognitive and language development. 
e    Well, ADHD is attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) affects children and teens and can continue into adulthood. ADHD is the most commonly diagnosed mental disorder of children. Children with ADHD may be hyperactive and unable to control their impulses. Or they may have trouble paying attention.
Parenting is not a cake walk, it needs lot of patience, energy and perseverance , these are the times when both parents work and when they are back home ,they are exhausted and to fetch those moments of peace, they give phones or switch on the TV for their kids ,oh! What a relief ,but this way the kids get addicted to phones and TV.
So, are a few minutes of television going to irrevocably damage your child?  Perhaps, No but friends, this is hampering their brain development especially for the kids below 5.
AAP,American Association of Pediatric’s screentime guidelines for kids are as follows:
·         0-18 months – no screen time (except for video chatting)
·         18 months to 2 years – the AAP mentions that media can be educational beginning at         18 months, though they don’t sound very convinced of this
·         2-5 years old – no more than 1 hour per day
·         5 years and beyond – the AAP don’t recommend a specific amount of screentime but        do urge parents to place consistent limits.
·    So, lets see how can we reduce the screen time habits for our kids-
Independent play-  chosen, initiated and directed completely by the child. When your child is able to engage in independent play, being with your child becomes less demanding. You are no longer the entertainment. You can sit back and just observe what your child is exploring. You may be able to read, check your email, work, eat chocolate—whatever—and all while he plays and explore. Self-directed play builds social and emotional health, confidence, creativity, self-discipline and problem solving skills.
 TV damages a child’s instinct for discovery and self-directed play. Not only is increased TV viewing linked to shorter attention spans, but TV viewing encourages the need and desire to be entertained over interest in discovery and exploration. So the more TV they watch, the less they are able to engage in self-directed play and the more they “need” TV. (Same goes for tablets, phones, and all other screens.)
As I said, watching TV can actually decrease children’s ability to engage in self-directed play so stopping TV viewing is an obvious first step. Some parents will feel that going cold turkey works best, while others gradually wean TV watching out of their child’s daily schedule. It will also depend on your child’s age.
Always choose toys wisely- When selecting or deciding whether to keep a toy, remember that simple is good. Choose toys that will foster imagination and discovery rather than toys that move or make noise. In fact, get rid of (or take the batteries out of) all battery-powered toys.  As infant expert Magda Gerber said “Active toys make passive children; passive toys make active children.” And active children are wonderful at discovering fun and entertaining activities that will keep them engaged! Let them play, let them choose, and please keep that urge to help your kid at bay, don’t interrupt them while playing and maintain trust on your kid.
Physical Activity-Walking in the park or at a mall are healthy for the body ,thus provide a substitute for video screen time. Indulging in sports is a valuable exercise for physical and social skills. Even spectator sports are valuable, as the child gets to see real people in real time rather than watching television or playing a virtual sports game on a screen. Be sure to help children discover at least one physical activity they can enjoy for an extended time – even into adulthood.

Music And Visual Arts- Buy a cabinet full of art supplies and an easel. Paints, colored pencils, pastels, and modeling clay are fodder for endless creations and can be enjoyed by any child.
Musical instruments are a time-tested activity for growing children. From simple rhythm sticks and hand drums  to piano lessons and band instruments for school-aged kids, music practice builds discipline and self-confidence. It gives a child the opportunity to create his own music with his own hands and mind.

Life Skills- Children enjoy learning grown-up skills, you can provide appropriate tools for a child to help sweep floors, cut vegetables, set the table and more. Children can also learn crafts such as knitting, weaving, and woodworking. Let them help with home repair projects by handing an adult the right tool or wielding a paint brush. Take them to the hardware store or let them tag along when it is time to get an oil change. These trips and projects can  foster learning as well as be opportunities for interesting conversations.

Let's show them how interesting the real world can be. Involve them in real things: pet care, personal relationships, home-improvement projects, and creative activities. To a child tuned in to the real world, the virtual “reality” on a screen will hold less appeal. Such a child can then learn to use media appropriately.


 

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