Summer Screen Time(r) Help with Individual Timers ~ Create it. Go!

Friday, May 29, 2015

Summer Screen Time(r) Help with Individual Timers

Happy FRIYAY! It's the first Friday of our summer break!!! YAY!'s when our new summer "schedule" kicks in. (I say Yay! here, but my kids aren't so sure. haha) What do you do in the summer? Is it free time, everyday, all day? Or do you have limited screen time, like we do, intermixed with time at the pool, reading, board games, etc.

In the past, we typically have had the kids EARN their screen time during the summer. I seem to do it a little differently every year, but they always have limited screen time. I have seen this help keep everyone much happier. My kids get grumpier the more they stare at screens. 

This past school year, I bought these little kitchen timers to help monitor the screen time in our house, and they are going to be great for the summer!

Each of my older kids has their own timer. I put their name on their timer. I actually cut their names out in vinyl on my Silhouette and used some fun gaming fonts too, but you can turn it into a fun decorating craft for the kids if you want too. Grab some sharpies or some paint pens and let the kids decorate their own timers. OR even stickers...Make it fun!

Then we keep them all in one spot, on a shelf, in our living room. 

They are each responsible for going and getting their timer, and starting it when they start a video game, watching a show, playing a game on the computer, etc. After they have played the allotted time they have, they return them to that same shelf. (We also use them for showers. They set them for 7 minutes and have to be out of the shower within that time. Works great!)

I love that these timers puts the responsibility of keeping track of their time, and following the rules, on their shoulders...not mine. You decide a consequence ahead of time, if they don't start their timer or follow the rules, and then follow through as well. It also keeps me from feeling like I am constantly "barking" at them.

What do you do at your house with screen time? I love hearing your ideas!