18 May 2017

Screen Time Sticks

The famously coveted "screen time".  My kids are like most kids.  They love tv...video games...ipads...phones...if left unchecked they would probably NEVER put them down or turn off the tv.  While these things are fun and I do want my kids to experience them, I don't want them glued to it to the point where they are missing out on other things or more likely, their brains are turning to mush.  So.  Something had to change because leaving the regulating up to me while I'm also trying to run a household, homeschool, and mother an infant - just wasn't working out too well.

I came up with this idea for the screen time sticks from a few different ideas I saw online and then mashed together.

A really fun part of this project was that I already had most of this stuff:

  • scrapbook paper
  • scrapbook stickers
  • store bought icing containers
  • hot glue gun
  • sharpie marker
  • jumbo craft sticks
  • easy to stick/remove wall hook things
  • hole punch (not pictured)

I covered the icing containers with scrapbook paper, using the hot glue to attach it.  Applied some fun stickers, and wrote their names with a Sharpie.

I color coded the sticks, assigning a color to each kid.  The number on top is how much screen time they get for that stick.

Then I wrote the task for each one on them.

This frame is something that I had on hand that I wasn't currently using.  It's one of my past projects.  It's a simple black picture frame that I took the glass out of, glued scrapbook paper and cork board to it, and then for this project I added the hook things to it (which I found at Dollar General).

I used a hole punch to put a hole in the back side of each cup.

Then hung up the cups and put the sticks in!  I also started a couple lists of suggestions for things they can do for the "Be Creative" stick and the "Do Something Kind" stick that I will hopefully add more to soon.  So far I think the system is working out pretty good.  We still have days that are worse than others where the kids would rather have screen time than do anything else, but for the most part, this works out quite well.  I like how it puts the responsibility on them and not on me to make sure they're not watching too much.  I also tried to do things that weren't just chores.  It helps them to use more of their brain and to think of someone other than themselves.

Do you have a system for regulating screen time that works for you?  Please share!

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