How can I use media to teach my kid self-control?
In a world of instant gratification and instant access to just about everything, self-control is really important -- and can be really challenging.
You can use media to help strengthen kids' self-control by setting appropriate media limits (with their input), finding media that helps kids organize their schedules and sharpen their focus, watching shows that promote the value of self-control, and demonstrate the consequences of having no self-control.
Movies, TV, and Books:
- Create an environment where kids can be consistent with their reading -- for example, a certain time of day or a certain place in the house.
- Encourage your kid to stick with a book for an extra page or chapter before deciding he doesn't like it.
- Read about characters who developed self-control.
- Watch movies and TV that promote self-control.
Social Media, Apps, Games, and Websites:
- Work together to create a weekly media schedule with a balance of activities and screen time.
- Find apps and games that require focus and concentration -- for example, strategy or role-playing games.
- Help your kids learn to self-regulate their own behavior.
- Seek out apps that help kids with organization and routines.
- Use accessibility settings such as Guided Access to keep tablets locked on one task at a time.
- Encourage kids to think through the consequences of their online actions.