Technology and digital media can have both positive and negative effects on the healthy development of a child.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that "parents and caregivers develop a family media plan that takes into account the health, education and entertainment needs of each child as well as the whole family".
Not all screen time is created equal!
- some cartoons, TV shows, games and apps are more developmentally appropriate than others for toddlers and preschool children.
- the role you play in how your child is exposed to technology and media is just as important (or even more) than the choice of media itself.
What are the current AAP recommendations?
- 0-18 months - avoid use of screen media, other than video-chatting.
- 18-24 months - if you wish to introduce children to digital media, choose high-quality programming and watch it with them to help them understand what they are seeing.
- 2-5 years old - limit screen use to 1 hour per day of high-quality programs. Parents should co-view media with children to help them understand what they are seeing and apply it to the world around them.
- 6 and older - place consistent limits on the time spent use media, the types of media used, and make sure that it doesn't interfere with adequate sleep, physical activity, and other behaviors that are essential to health.
Where can I find more information?