Another Perspective on Screen-Time Limits

Much of the rhetoric and action related to screen time revolves around elimination or reduction. When our first child was born, I wanted to live the APA “rule”: no television before age 2. Well, that didn’t work out, and the boy turned out to be hyperverbal, developing spoken language early and reading at age 4. It certainly can be argued that elimination is unrealistic and perhaps even problematic for youth (isolating, as a friend recently put it). In any case, people certainly are developing digital footprints at younger and younger ages, and some argue that responsible screen use is about balance and purpose, not simply reduction or elimination. Dr. Elaine Young’s Tuned-in Family comes to mind, with her breakdown of screen users and uses. This article from The Boston Globe—more of an infographic, really—presents a related way of thinking about our and our children’s use of screens. What do you think? Parents, how do you manage or regulate your children’s screen time? Why do you choose to manage it in that way?

—Ben Boyington

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