Guest post written by Brand Ambassador: Kayla Harker.
When I share with other mamas, friends, and family about no screen time, I often get the crazy eyes. Most responses sound like, “what! why? I could never!!” Keep reading mama because, YES YOU CAN!
My husband and I first choose to do away with screen time (all television/tablets) in our home when I gave birth to our firstborn son, Hudson. I am a mother of two boys now, Hudson (19months) and Beckham (6months).
In addition, I wanted to carefully select toys for him that excluded loud noises and bright flashing lights (so they weren't overstimulating). I did thorough research on the effects of screen time in the early developmental years, which ultimately helped make our decision to eliminate screen time for our family.
Below I am sharing a few tips and tricks we implement to enjoy screen-less parenting and maintain our sanity in the process!
1. Sensory Activities
Instead of morning cartoons, we choose a sensory activity. An absolute favorite for my son is water beads (found on Amazon). I prep them the night before by adding water to our sensory play table (IKEA FLISAT Children’s Table) and let them soak overnight. They will expanded and be ready for play in the morning! I offer shovels, spoons (sand toys work great!), and even his little cars or trucks. This keeps him busy for hours and also exercises his imagination.
2. Go Outdoors
Our family also chooses to get outside in nature daily. We have committed to the 1000 hours outdoor challenge in 2022 (@1000hoursoutside on Instagram). It is an incredible way to be intentional about spending time outdoors as a family. They include an app to easily track your hours and log your memories in the making! We really enjoy walks around our property, feeding the chickens, and soaking in every bit of sunshine.
3. Toy Rotation
My third trick is toy rotation. I rotate my sons toys weekly or sometimes semi-weekly to help keep them fresh and exciting. I also like to keep his toys organized and accessible for him to play. I have noticed de-cluttering his toy area actually keeps him playing longer. He can see all his options and stays busy going from one toy to the next.
4. Find a Supportive Community
My fourth and final helpful tip is to find a supportive community who also chooses no screen time. I have found this to be key. It is so encouraging to share experiences, bounce ideas back and forth and support each other.
Let us know in the comments below any tips you might have for limiting screen-time in your household!