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Giving up iPad and Electronics

In the Family 037‘I let my 4.5 year old son Alex watch children’s TV and use apps on the iPad, because I didn’t see the harm in it. It gave us a break and gave him chance to enjoy his cartoons and learn some new things. But our son wasn’t listening to us, he was passive in his interactions. He was increasingly ignoring us and his behaviour was getting worse. We hadn’t realised how it damages the child’s listening skills and leads to ‘attentional damage’ overall. I hadn’t really paid attention to how self-absorbed Alex got, when in front of a screen. But I then remembered the same sensation, when I was a child, feeling almost zombified in front of the TV, even though it was only black and white then. I remember hearing my parents talking, but it just didn’t register, that I was meant to respond. So with Sibylle’s prompting we turned the iPad off… and the world didn’t end. In fact it’s made a positive change in all our lives. I put it away and my phone too. I only use it to make a necessary call, – the rest of the time it lives on top of the fridge. I’m reading more and sleeping better. And Alex too. He can listen to what I’m saying and he can use his own imagination to play. We’re reading more together and he’s helping us more around the house, like laying the table, washing machine or cooking. I didn’t believe that this would help us and I thought screen time had its uses, but so far we’re not missing it at all. In fact I’m thinking to sell it and buy a record player instead.’ (Mother of 4 year old)

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