Parenting the Connected Generation

Parenting the Connected Generation

Parenting the Connected Generation (children born after 2000 and growing up with technology).  Sometimes I have the awesome opportunity to speak to local groups on parenting topics.  The information is great for Busy Kids readers and for the parents who attended the seminar!

  • How to Earn Technology Time (printable)
  • The Technology Elevator (printable sample and blank)
  • Resources:  Pinterest, websites and books

Everyone’s favorite line from the evening….

It's Easier to Lighten Up

Isn’t this the truth on all things parenting?  If you feel that technology has gotten out of control at your house, then it’s time to rein it all back in. How to Earn Technology Time

Encourage play first - "How to Earn Technology Time"  Free Printable from BusyKidsHappyMom.org

Printable: How to Earn Technology Time 

Earning Technology Time

This chart is a hand tool to use to manage your child’s technology time.  How often have we heard them declare that they are bored?  We have our children earn their time, based on the following:  exercise, playing outside, doing their chores, reading, and creating.  You need to decide what your children need to work on (math facts, feeding the dog, cleaning their room, reading, playing together) and that’s what you put on your chart.  

Remember:  You, the mom, are the QUEEN.  My chart uses 1 hours and 15 minutes a day.  If I’m following the no more than 2 hour rule (set by the American Academy of Pediatrics for ages 6-18), then it still allows for a bonus 45 minutes.  Then we can all watch a show together, I can chat with a friend, or they can play a game with a friend.

The chart also takes all of the guilt out of letting them have technology time.  At first I monitored it, but then was able to back away.  So when they’re on using a device or playing a game, I know they’ve done something productive to earn it.

Check out our favorite VISUAL timer (click here).  It doesn’t make any noise and the kids can easily see how much time they have left.  Truly a lifesaver!  My kids also each use a simple Timex watch (click here) to keep track of their time when we’re on the go.

Click here to find out “What Kids Need Today”

Technology Elevator

 Printable Technology Elevator (2 pages:  1 example, 1 blank):  Technology Elevator

 Technology Elevator – My husband and I came up with this elevator to help steer my now 12 year old and show him that we had a plan.  Instead of just passing over a device  we’re take baby steps.  It’s always easier to lighten up rather than tighten up.  Kids move up when they demonstrate maturity, self control, or they’re about to leave for college! 

Being able to manage a chart like this shows responsibility and they earn your trust.  It also clearly outlines to them what you feel is important for them to learn.  There is no checklist that we’re working off of, these are just decisions that each family must make on their own.

The sample elevator starts at the bottom and works up.  Just like Tim Smith’s  chart (on the left), we have to move from control > coach > consultant.  All levels are monitored… until they leave your home.

Think about when you were learning to drive.  For years you’d ridden in the car with your parents.  You knew where the pedals were, how to operate the radio, you had some basic understanding of where different roads led.

This Technology Elevator allows you to do the same thing with the internet…. Build up, rein it back in if needed, but slow and steady.  With boundaries in place like this it allows them to have the privileges OR drop a level if there needs to be a consequence.  Remember: It’s easier to lighten up rather than tighten up.

PINTEREST BOARD:  Technology and Our Kids

BOOKS:

No More Perfect Kids: Love the Kids You Have, Not the Ones You Want

Five Conversations You Must Have With Your Son by Vicki Courtney

Five Conversations  You Must Have With Your Daughter by Vicki Courtney

Six Ways to Keep the Good in Your Boy by Dannah Gresh

Life Skills for Kids

Hands Free Mama  by Rachel Stafford

Preparing Your Son for Every Man’s Battle by Steven Arterburn

Your Brain on Porn (free e-book from Covenant Eyes)

PRINTABLES:

Positive Parenting Solutions Summer Contract (includes chores, behavior, and technology)

iMoms Social Media Contract

Life Skills (what kids need to know ages 2-18 for life)

BORED printable – for kids who don’t know what to do with themselves!

RESOURCES:

imom

Common Sense Media

Focus on the Family

Positive Parenting Solutions

Wiredsafety.org

Additional Resources:

How to Set Up a Family Computer Station

Tim Smith’s Consequence Planner

 *Links are affiliate to Amazon.  This site receives a small percentage off of each purchase.  Thank you!

Special thank to my sister for making my printables look super cool!

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About Kristen

Kristen is a Reading Specialist who currently works with children in Kindergarten through 3rd Grade. She is the blogger behind Busy Kids = Happy Mom, a site dedicated to fun, practical, and purposeful activities to do with your kids. Follow Kristen on Facebook, Pinterest, and subscribe for updates.

Comments

  1. Ann Pilarte says:

    Wow, Kristen, I love and needed this post! I so wish that I didn’t need to monitor my kids’ screen time and they’d just naturally want to play outside or read or play Legos over screen time – but that’s just not the case. It’s a great reminder to me too – I would also like to earn my screen time this way. Thanks for anothe great post!!

  2. Oh, how I love this concept of earned screen time! My son is homeschooled and he can earn up to 30 minutes if he completes his work with a good attitude…5 minutes for each task. The incentive has worked wonders for his attitude! :)
    Becky Spence recently posted…Strategies for Reading Longer WordsMy Profile

  3. This is really wonderful! Your technology elevator is genius. We will be using it at my house.
    JDaniel4′s Mom recently posted…Easter Game- Egg Toss BottlesMy Profile

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