I am a member of the Microsoft Blogger program, but all opinions are my own.
Christmas is less than a week away, and my kids are so excited for their presents. Like most kids their age, they have quite a few technology items on their Christmas wish list. My daughter wants a new iPod Touch, while my son is asking for lots of video games. Because of the amount of travel, the vacation from schoolwork, and the types of gifts that kids get, kids’ technology use tends to be high during the holiday season. Here’s some data, provided by Microsoft, about kids’ technology use during the holidays.
- Over half of parents feel it is appropriate to entertain kids with video games during holiday gatherings (57%).
- Nearly 30% of parents feel their children use more technology more during the holidays.
- During the holidays, one-third of parents try to limit their children’s tech use during special occasions (33%).
- One quarter of parents say their children use technology a lot when they receive technology as a gift (26%) and that kids use technology more because they have more time on their hands (26%).
So, what are the best tips for managing technology use during the holidays?
- Set limits and follow them. My son will play games for hours on end if I don’t limit him. I do give them some extra time if we are traveling, but also try to find other ways to entertain them.
- According to Microsoft, many parents are more comfortable with kids spending time in front of screens if they’re creating something rather than passively consuming content. As a parent, I definitely agree with that. One great option is Project Spark, a learning to code game is available on Windows 8 and Xbox One.
- Parental controls are also important. I recently set up a separate child account for my son on our Nextbook 8. Through my Microsoft account, I’m able to set limits for each member of the family under my account, and can also monitor his activity.
- Find offline alternatives. Take a nature walk, play a board game, or head to an indoor pool. On vacation, I have my kids write an account of their trip in a journal.
How do you manage technology use during the holidays?