Phones, tablets, computers, laptops…like it or not technology is everywhere, and kids will find a way to gain access to a screen. Whether you are a caregiver or spend time around children on a regular basis, you’ve likely been involved in or listened to conversations regarding how much time children should or shouldn’t spend in front of a screen. Whether it’s browsing social media, playing games or watching movies and TV shows, there is a lot of content available for consumption online for all age groups.
The American Academy of Pediatrics published guidelines to help families make decisions about exposure to media:
- Children under the age of 18 months should avoid the use of screens other than video-chatting.
- Children ages 18-24 months can watch limited high-quality, developmentally appropriate programming with an adult.
- Children ages two to five years old should limit screen use to one hour per day of high-quality programs.
- Children six years and older should follow consistent limits on viewing media and ensure it doesn’t replace physical activity, affect sleep habits or other behaviors.
- Families should designate media-free times and spaces.
When we live in a world inundated with media and technology, it can be difficult to shield young children from screens and limit exposure. When the whole world shut down in 2020 it presented additional challenges, and we saw children more than double their screen use to nearly seven hours per day!
You’ve probably seen or heard us talking about ‘Active Screentime’ A LOT, and we want to explain what we mean by it. How can screen time be active? When you think of spending time on a device, it’s not exactly an ‘active’ activity. And on top of that, most educational apps developed for children are passive games or activities that kids can indulge in while being sedentary.
When we came up with the idea for Hiveclass we set out to reimagine what youth sports training looks like. We want to build a community and create a platform that brings sports directly to young athletes, and our goal is to get kids playing and moving. Hiveclass brings together technology and sports education so when kids use our platform at home, or through their local library, they have the ability to watch short instructional videos for 5-10 minutes to learn a new skill and then spend 30-60 minutes practicing on their own or with friends and family. This is Active Screentime!
We know that screens are not going anywhere, and they’re also not toxic! Having access to technology and information is a privilege, it’s what we do with it that matters. As new technology becomes available it’s normal for society to get nervous, but if there’s anything we’ve learned in the past two years it’s the ability to adapt and pivot – and children and young adults are way more resilient than we give them credit for. We can incorporate new tech into our daily lives in a healthy way and make a positive impact. We know that too much passive screen time can lead to behavior problems, academic struggles, overeating and obesity, insomnia and an increase in mental health problems. We also know that being involved in sports and physical activity directly combats these common issues.
There are various ways to incorporate Hiveclass into your daily routine. Here are some ideas to introduce Active Screentime to the young athletes in your life:
- Encourage kids to explore more sports – being involved in different activities reduces the risk of overuse injuries and allows athletes to develop new skills.
- Introduce unique skills and practice together – create new memories and have fun spending quality time with the kids in your life.
- If a child is part of a homeschool or independent study group or attending public school with a remote/hybrid learning program, it’s important to maintain their physical activity. Remote physical education is hard, but with Hiveclass there are countless options for families to ensure kids are meeting P.E. requirements.
Our team is made up of educators, parents and creative individuals who experience the daily struggle of screen time on a personal level. We are all dependent on our devices and often have a hard time disconnecting, so we understand the concerns of our community. If you have any questions about Active Screentime, or feedback for our platform, we would love to hear from you!