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How to choose the TV or screen content for children?

Selecting and using appropriate programs for children involves several steps focused on ensuring the content is beneficial, age-appropriate, and aligns with your family’s values and educational goals. Here are some strategies to help you choose and use appropriate programs:

1 Research and Select High-Quality Content

  •      Educational Value: Look for programs with clear learning goals that are age-appropriate and support developmental skills such as language, problem-solving, and social-emotional learning.
  •      Reviews and Recommendations: Use reputable sources to find reviews and recommendations. Organizations like Common Sense Media provide detailed reviews of TV shows, apps, and games, focusing on educational content and age appropriateness.
  •      Preview Content: content should not be to loud, or the images should move slowly, sometimes it is easier to use old cartoons or films. It is difficult for children under 6 years old to follow the images + sounds. 
  • Encourage slow program. 
  1. Engage in Co-viewing or Co-playing
  •      Shared Media Use: Watch shows or play apps/games together with your child. This not only allows you to monitor the content but also to interact with your child about what they are seeing and learning.
  •      Ask Questions: Encourage your child to think critically about what they watch by asking questions about the content, characters, and the story. This helps develop comprehension and analytical skills.
  1. Set Limits and Create a Balanced Media Diet
  •      Screen Time Limits: Follow guidelines for age-appropriate screen time and ensure that digital media use does not displace sleep, physical activity, or offline play.
  •      Variety: Ensure that your child’s media exposure includes a wide range of content types, including educational programs, stories that inspire creativity, and content that promotes physical activity.
  1. Use Parental Controls and Settings
  •      Safe Viewing Settings: Use parental controls to filter content, set time limits, and ensure that your child is only accessing appropriate programs.
  •      Customize Experience: Many apps and platforms allow customization to suit educational goals and age levels, ensuring that your child is presented with the most suitable content.
  1. Foster a Media-Literate Environment
  •      Discuss Media: Have regular discussions about the content your child consumes, including the difference between fiction and reality, advertising, and online safety.
  •      Encourage Creation: Encourage your child to create their own content, such as drawing a picture of their favorite character or telling their own stories, to foster creativity and critical thinking.
  1. Be a Role Model
  •      Model Behavior: Demonstrate healthy media habits by being mindful of your own screen time, especially in front of your children, and engage in media-free activities as a family.

 

By taking these steps, you can help ensure that screen time is a positive and enriching part of your child’s development. Remember, the goal is not just to limit exposure to harmful content but to actively promote experiences that are educational, interactive, and socially enriching.

 

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