Texting during dinner? Spending time ‘together’ in the living room but everyone’s on a device? Talking to your child who isn’t really listening because he/she is on the smartphone? Sounds familiar?
Children nowadays don’t know a life without things like phones, computers, or television. Technology has become an integral part of their daily lives – even at an early age.
According to a national survey, Australian children aged 12-13 are spending at least 3 hours a day staring at screens.
Of course, technology has it’s benefits – but too much of a good thing isn’t always a good thing. So what’s the matter? It’s the fact that everyone is connecting with someone – just not the people in the same room.
The question is – how do we reconnect with our family?
Here are some ways to maintain communication and spend quality time together as a family.
Communicate and set your expectations with your family regarding technology usage. These boundaries may include:
- Limiting type of media your children may use
- Restricting the length of time they may use the devices
- Limiting times and places where electronic devices are not to be used
Once you communicate the boundaries, enforce and modify them as required.
Schedule “Offline” Family Time
Make the effort to schedule in time with your kids where disconnecting is a must! For example, you can play board games together, go out for dinner, or go for a walk along the foreshore. Enjoy your time together and leave the devices behind.