Parenting and screen time it is such a loaded discussion. Still, I am going to add my opinion because it seems to be coming up a lot lately as the school year begins.
Like many parents I wrestle with how I look at the time that my son spends with the computer, tablet, and television. I’ll start by saying that we have a very fluid relationship with screens, we don’t limit Alder’s screen access by time. I think that each day calls for its own decision. Generally speaking, when we are together all day we aren’t on the computer from about 9 to 4. We might take ten minutes right after lunch to check things but we try to spend our time being engaged with each other and doing non-computer things. This doesn’t mean that we are on there the rest of the time. But it isn’t a set rule. There are some days when we are each on the computer for hours.
For me there is a lot of guilt involved with letting him sit in front of a screen for long periods of time not because I find that the screen itself is bad but sometimes he is there because I can’t focus on him they way that he needs. To me the time he spends on the computer because I can’t engage him is the worst because he is only using it to fill a space not because he actively wants to be on the computer. This has led me to come up with a theory of screen time quality.
Of course I can talk about screen time and my child for hours, but until I get to a point where I don’t feel like I am wasting my time on the computer myself I am never going to be able to be at peace with how we approach it as a family.