So last month was a crazy one. And along with all the commotion was also my oldest's birthday. Well, she received an ipad from my parents. Don't get me wrong, she loves it and there are a lot of great things that can be learned from this little device. However, it has since opened a new can of worms. I'm pretty sure many people with kids can relate. In our day and age of technology, kids are constantly bombarded with information....overload. And while I think it is important for us as parents to prepare our kids for the world they are living in.....we all need some balance.
Am I right?
We didn't really have set rules when she first received this little baby. So we just kind of went with it. We have an old computer that both kids can play educational games on and such. And just as anything, the newness wore off. That is what I was expecting with the ipad as well. And while she's only had it about a month, the pace at which new games and apps are being created just keeps fueling my daughter's desire for more, more, MORE! She also received an itunes gift card that we used towards some new games. But as soon as we uploaded a new one she was tired of it and ready for something new. Overload I tell you. Ahhhhhhh!!!!
So, some restrictions have now been put into place.
I created these Technology Tickets that are each worth 30 minutes of screen time.
I am going to give her 10 (I think) a week for her to use at her will (with some explaining that she is to stretch them over the entire week). Once they are gone for the week, so is the ipad...until the new week starts and she receives more tickets.
These tickets can be taken away at any time her dad and I see necessary. She may even be rewarded with one every now and again for good behavior if we find that this is motivating for her.
The hope is that not only does this leave room for other activities but that the time she is devoting to the ipad will be much more focused and intentional rather than jumping from game to game and becoming overstimulated.
And just in case any of you are dealing with some similar issues, I created a free download for you to print and use as you see fit. (I plan to print out 10 tickets and laminate them to use again and again.) Click here for this version.
Here's another more general set if that works better.
I'll keep you posted as to how our new system is working. I tell you, there is always something to create a new system for. Just as you think one is working, something changes. Guess I can never complain about being bored. :)