Remember the days when we as kids you used to just enjoy playing outside and did not even bother to indulge in any gadgets? Well, to be fair, there were no smartphones or tablets back then, just the old desktop computers that had a huge CPU unit.
With time I have seen how parenting has changed, and kids now indulge in gadgets more than playing with their friends. Well, I would completely blame the parents as they allow their kids to operate gadgets at such a young age. I have seen several parents allowing their children to watch television while they have their meals to make feeding easier. Some parents let their kids watch loads of television so that they get to enjoy some alone time.
Well, I know that engaging with kids is a huge task, but if you have taken up the responsibility, you better find some time for them to curb down their gadget time.
Here are a few fun ways to make your kid’s gadget independent.
1. Excite them to Indulge in Creating Art and Craft
Kids love to play with colors; hence handing them our coloring books and coloring pencils can keep them engaged for hours. While having fun, they also get to learn to color within the lines and learn more about different color pallets.
A mistake that most parents make is waiting for their children to somehow show an interest in arts and crafts themselves, and then “push them further” by encouraging them to learn more about these activities. Can you spot the mistake here?
Most children don’t know what they want. They are still way too young and they have no idea how to world works or what options it has to offer to them. I personally never knew I’m interested in cars until someone showed me a thing or two at the age of twenty-three, which is considered a young adult, so how do you expect children under the age of ten to know what they want to do in life?
Show them art, show them crafts, introduce them to the process of creating these things, educate them on what’s interesting and they’ll soon find what they want to do themselves.
2. Introduce Them to Books
This stage of kids is great for them to learn to read more. Start with books with loads of images and slowly shift to books with more text. Catching onto the reading bug early in life will help them become a book lover.
Even books nowadays are becoming digital. There are e-books and books in the form of videos, which are more attractive to children. However, all this requires them to stare at a screen, which is bad for their eyes and their overall cognitive abilities. You don’t use the same brain capacity when reading and when someone else reads for you. Reading yourself is better for brain development.
Other things you need to know is that your kids will perform better in school and during their entire academic life later on if you properly introduce them to books and doing research themselves. This alone can make them a lot more successful in life.
3. Encourage them To Play Outdoors
Playing indoors is ok, but you have to encourage them to at least play outside for 2 hours. Socializing with other kids and playing is an important skill they need to learn to develop several life skills.
What also matters is to make your kids love playing outdoors. They shouldn’t feel like this is some kind of an activity that you force them to do. Show them the beauty of playing outdoors. Help them meet new friends and that’s pretty much all you need to do.
Most kids are shy, you have to remember that. Even if you weren’t like that when you were younger, it doesn’t mean that your child is not shy. Maybe that’s what’s preventing them to enjoy playing outdoors, but after you “push them” to make a couple of friends, they’ll love the activity and the thought of going outside whenever they can.
4. Take Them Out for Fun Activities
It helps kids to spend quality time with family doing something fun. Take them out to a park, an amusement park, or the Paranoia Quest Escape the room in Atlanta for bigger kids to enjoy solving puzzles to escape a room along with family, which is exciting and helps them understand the importance of teamwork.
Outdoor activities don’t always mean sports. Some kids hate sports, and even though you should give your best to make them love sports, you shouldn’t force it too much, or they’ll dislike these activities even more later on.
Fun activities often include visiting playgrounds or going for a swim. Laser tag or watching movies are also options. It doesn’t have to be connected to physical activity. Hiking or going for a walk is also great. You can combine a simple walk with some type of activity that makes this all a lot more interesting for your child. When I was a child, walking outdoors with my parents was a very boring activity until they “invented” a little game which included me guessing all the car brands by their logos along the way. That made things a lot more interesting for me.
5. Help Them Develop Hobbies
Kids when young start choosing things they like to do. If they express their desire to swim, enroll them for swimming sessions, or if they are willing to learn an instrument, help them explore options. Remember, developing a hobby is an essential part of a child’s development and this is where they can build their unique skills which may become their career someday so always encourage them to pursue one.
The Bottom Line
The initial years of your kid’s life build the foundation of their future. You have to pay more attention to their needs and habits; hence just to make things easier for you, do not let them get into the gadget mode, missing out on experiencing the real essence of life. These real-life experiences will help your kid learn new things that will help them stay ahead of any kid who is gadget addicted.