Getting children off their devices in the first place might seem like a big challenge, but writing up a family media plan the whole family has input into is a great start.
Negotiate a written plan with your child to set boundaries for screen use, including digital-free zones and times in your home, as well as consequences if the plan is not adhered to. The Telethon Children’s Institute recommends devices should not be used in bedrooms, and all screens should be switched off an hour before bedtime. Include rules that teach children to prioritise. On a school day, this may mean no electronics until they finish their homework or chores are complete. Use tech tools to manage digital access, like Google Family Link, Apple Screen Time controls and family-friendly WiFi routers and filters.
Children learn more from what they see than from what you say, so model healthy electronics use. Show your child you can put your device down too. Turn off notifications and alerts; those pings and pop-ups immediately draw our attention to our devices, and away from each other.
Discover our resources to help with reducing screen time: