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My kid won't do anything but watch TV and play video games. Help!

Topics: Screen Time

It can be hard for kids to set their own limits when watching TV or playing video games. According to Common Sense Media's study of kids' media use, teens spend about nine hours a day with entertainment media, while tweens average about six hours. That's why it's important for parents to help.

  • Set time limits. Agree on weekly screen-time amounts that work for your family. Consider creating a device contract (for yourself and your kid!) to keep everyone honest.
  • Role-model good digital habits. Parent role-modeling shows kids the behavior and values you want in your home.
  • Carve out media-free zones. Make certain areas off-limits to media and devices. Learn more about creating media-free zones.
  • Strive for balance. You might have days of heavier media use, such as when your kid is home sick from school. Other days will be lighter. Aim for a balance of activities throughout the week.

If you've tried setting limits and you think TV and video games are causing major problems for your kid, talk to your pediatrician or another qualified professional for advice.

Common Sense Media

Common Sense Media offers the largest, most trusted library of independent age-based ratings and reviews. Our timely parenting advice supports families as they navigate the challenges and possibilities of raising kids in the digital age.