Keep the TV off during mealtimes. Instead, focus on eating together as a family.
Screen media entertains, informs, and educates; however, studies have shown that too much time in front of the TV, tablet, and smartphone can negatively impact health. It is important to find a healthy balance between taking advantage of the many benefits digital technology has to offer and engaging in positive one-on-one interactions. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends limiting screen time for children aged 2-5 years to just one hour per day and discourages any screen time for children under 18 months, as real-world interactions are especially critical for growth and development. Limiting screen time to two hours or less each day is a great place to start!
Strive for media-free meals!
- Serve meals at the table with family and friends whenever possible. Mealtime provides a wonderful opportunity to share details about the day.
- Keep phones and tablets in a separate room. Turn them off or switch to silent mode to eliminate disruptions.
- Assign meal preparation tasks to family members – setting the table, pouring beverages, assembling salads, etc. to facilitate the transition from screen time to mealtime.