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How much screen time for a 7 year old? And tendency to go nuts afterwards...

(4 Posts)
coveredinsnot Sun 13-Sep-15 10:26:44

My 7 year old ds LOVES all things screen related. Minecraft, wii, movies etc. He is very physically fit and active, plays football, kung fu, parkour, surfing etc. He's a brilliant reader and reads to us and independently without nagging. But when are home, he's just desperate to be on some kind of screen. Prior to the summer holidays we'd has a no screen rule during the week and 2 hours each weekend day. It worked really well and he seemed much more level headed, we played games together after school etc.

However I'm very heavily pregnant (due today in fact) and have had a difficult pregnancy for many reasons and have over relied on screens for entertainment over the summer. Now we're back into problematic territory where he's just obsessed and then so narky, nasty, rude and sometimes tearful when we say enough. With a new baby on the way I'm struggling to get my head around how to effectively limit screens when I will also be struggling to have the ability to play with him.

I'm just looking for some sense of what an average amount of screen use is for a child of 7, and also how to manage his behavioural meltdowns when we turn them off/ insist he gets outside, and how to effectively limit screens when a newborn is imminent!

IAmAPaleontologist Sun 13-Sep-15 10:37:34

Ds1 gets like that, too much computer game playing and he is horrible. We have none in the school week and half an hour a day on Friday, sat and sun. If he chooses to then he can save it up and have longer for if he needs longer to get past a level on a particular game or something. Essentially we are just bloody strict on it so there is no point in him complaining and asking for more as he wont get it. We also have a rule that he has to go out and have fresh air and exercise before he can have his time!

Funny how different they can be. Dd can take it or leave it and when her time is up she puts it down and skips off to do something else.

Don't beat yourself up though, it is horrid when you are tired and pregnant and then tired and taking care of a newborn. Standards slip and you do end up relying far more on easy technology so give yourself a break, it won't last forever.

coveredinsnot Sun 13-Sep-15 12:35:10

Thank you! I so wish we hadn't lost our hard won strictness before the summer. But you're right, needs must and I guess it is temporary.

He's been moaning for over 3 hours now about wanting to play minecraft! It's driving me NUTS and I'm supposed to be raising my effing oxytocin levels to try and get labour started. Aaaagggghhhh!

asfish Fri 18-Sep-15 14:12:44

My son is 27 months and just as bad as you describe for screens. I've always been ok with a little bit but my wife was not having any of it.

Both our parents lives 100's of miles away so since he was born he has been looking at an IPad on Skype several times a week so I feel it can't be withheld but needs some control

So I let him have a couple of Fireman Sam or the Gruffalo movies once a day, then its turned off. Its also been important to get my wife onboard and start the TV sessions, he started saying mummy go and shutting the door as he viewed her as a buzz kill for his TV sessions

He tries to pickpocket my phone all the time and has a word for it, if he gets it he will give it back and say "lock daddy" as he wants me to unlock it! He is very good with it as well, can launch Youtube and happily use it without my help.

He also likes to watch digger videos on Youtube, he used to sit on my knee but now tells me to get out of the chair so he can have it to himself

He loves books, playing outside and has started to do constructive play (play with the Lego models I build instead of smashing them) so I have no issue with PC and TV is small amounts, there is no avoiding them.

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