It turns out that mobile games are useful for children – with the right choice of content, playing time, the necessary and sufficient participation of an adult. You can find examples of such non-harmful games on androidappsforme. Whether to give a child gadgets, from what age, and for how long?
Mobile Games For Children: Psychologists Do Not Mind
The instruction for parents on safe and effective integration of gadgets, mobile games into leisure time of children from 3 to 10 years.
1. Introduce your baby to gadgets
Calmly tell your baby 1,5-2 years about the cell phone and the tablet – as well as talk about other things, give explanations of their purpose. Don’t give your child an image of forbidden fruit.
2. Give children gadgets from the age of 3-5.
It is not recommended to give gadgets to children before the age of 3, because from 1 to 3 years old the leading developmental activity of a child is object-based.
The parent needs to create a rich and varied sensory environment for the child, with which the baby actively acts: touches, smells, licks. It is the most important prerequisite for the formation of an internal action plan and mental development.
A baby’s mastery of speech also stems from the need to communicate with an adult and the need for an object to be named.
Children will live, work, relax, communicate using gadgets. But to use them intelligently, they must go through a preliminary developmental path.
From the age of three, a child begins a new stage of development – socialization. From this moment, we can begin to teach children to interact with gadgets.
If parents completely deprive the child of access to a tablet, a cell phone, sooner or later he will encounter them in full. And if it was “not inoculated”, it will be difficult for him to master.
For preschoolers and younger students the tablet, phone, computers are a good field for collaborative games, with rules set from the outside and observed by all participants.
Knowledge of games, gadgets allows the child to maintain contact with other children, while they cannot build these relationships without using them.
3. Choose the best – participate in choosing age-appropriate and useful games
The right content of a mobile game, as well as a cartoon or a book, will have a positive impact on the child, promote learning and development. Therefore, it is important not only to monitor the time the child spends at the screen but also to choose carefully the appropriate applications.
Participate in the selection of mobile games, study the developers’ descriptions, look at screenshots and discuss it all together with your child.
Observe how your child plays, ask him or her if it’s easy or difficult for him or her. Pay attention to the graphics, pace, and sound of the game. If possible, go through the game yourself before giving it to your child.
4. Play mobile games with your children
Playing games together is different from the usual shared leisure activities like walking, reading, or board games, but it is meaningful and valuable.
In the mobile play, you can learn a lot about your child – his perceptions, behavioral traits. You can help your child learn new skills, gain knowledge, learn to cope with unfamiliar situations, achieve victories and accept defeats with dignity.
A child under the age of 7 has not formed voluntariness – the ability to control and manage their functions. Without parents, a child with no sense of timing will not be able to “get out” of an exciting game in time.
As the child becomes aware of what he does and how he does it, his functions become arbitrary. The arbitrariness in the child’s behavior manifests itself in the fulfillment of requirements, specific rules. Assist the child.
5. Take the path of reasonable restraint
Concerning mobile play, there should be clear rules established by parents, routine moments – as well as about sleep, eating, walking, etc.
Children by the age of 10 can spend up to 1.5-2 hours of leisure time a day in front of a screen, including a TV, tablet, cell phone.
Taking into account physiological characteristics, the recommended mobile playtime for children:
- 3-4 years – no more than 10-15 minutes 1-3 times a week;
- 5-6 years old – up to 15 minutes continuously once a day; 7-8 years old – up to 30 minutes once a day;
- 9-10 years old – up to 30-40 minutes 1-3 times a day.
Parents, taking into account the individual features of their child, age, state of health, daily and weekly routines, can choose the most appropriate time to play and agree with the child on the rules. It is possible, for example, to have the child play at home or vice versa on the road. It must be a system.
6. Demonstrate appropriate behavior to your child
You set an example for your child, including how to use digital media. Your child copies your model of mobile device use. Limit your own time you spend in front of electronic devices, stay ethical in your online interactions. Try, in a caring way, to spend a little more time interacting with your children.
7. Create media-free zones
Agree not to use gadgets at meals and before bedtime. Choose and establish certain days and hours in your family without gadgets. Remember that double morality is not acceptable here. Eliminate background TV, phone viewing when you are interacting with your child.
8. Help the child, and he can finish the game without tantrums
- put a time limit on playtime;
- establish an “exit” ritual for mobile play. Set an alarm clock. Remind your child several times and warn him. You need to let him prepare;
- make such an alternative suggestion, which the child can’t refuse. The mobile game is attractive to the child, but there should be an understandable alternative, and it should also be attractive to him.
- join in the game, trace the right moment when something is achieved, completed, so as not to cut it off at the most interesting place. Help your child keep the results achieved.
9. Pay attention to whether gadgets do not displace other forms of leisure of the child
Does your child have enough time to socialize, talk, play, walk, create, and more? If you think that your child is forming a game addiction, contact a professional.
If you notice that your child has no other desires and interests except for mobile games, that he plays the same game, he has reduced appetite, has problems with sleep, fatigue, tension, do not scold him, and do not forbid to play.
Consult specialists: psychologist, neurologist, psychotherapist, they will help to diagnose the condition and advise the scheme of further work.
Remember that gadgets are not the source of dependence. Addiction occurs when a child is trying to escape from real problems. The addiction does not form if the child has interests outside of mobile games and if he has trusting relations and communication with parents, peers outside of gadgets.