Is your child ready for a cellphone?


Steve Schering, Staff Writer AAP

Deciding whether a child is ready to have a cellphone can be a tough call for parents and caregivers. Cellphones allow children to stay in contact with adults and friends, but they also give youths access to the internet, apps and social media.

While many children worked on laptops and tablets during the COVID-19 pandemic, cellphones are different. Children can have a smartphone with them almost all the time. As a result, they may be on theirphone instead of having face-to-face conversations, doing homework, participating in sports or sleeping.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends parents consider the following before giving their child a smartphone:

What would your child use the phone for?
What are your child’s challenges that might make having a phone more difficult?
How would you know your child is being a responsible phone user?
What are the other ways they can connect with friends?
Do you have a regular way to check in with them about how life is going, including their digital life?
Parents and caregivers are encouraged to talk with their child about cellphone use and have their child show them what games or apps they like.

Many phones include controls, filters, timers and other features that parents can use to limit what children can access and how long they can be on a phone. These features can be turned off as a child shows more responsibility.

Parents also should take note of how they use their phone. If they look at their phone while driving or during meals, for example, a child is likely to do the same.

If parents decide their child is not ready for a phone, they should have an ongoing conversation about responsible cellphone use. They also can look into non-smartphone devices that help children stay in contact with others.
For more information on determining if a child is ready for a cellphone, visit https://bit.ly/3sDm08B.


Copyright © 2022 American Academy of Pediatrics

Want to Entertain the Kids in the Car Without Screens?

April 12th, 2018 | Behavior, Family Fun, parenting, Teens, Toddlers, travel
Want to Entertain the Kids in the Car Without Screens?

Summer is a time for family trips, often involving hours long car rides. One way to avoid the road trip blues is to engage your kids.

Did you know that you can borrow audiobooks, and ebooks, from the local library? Nothing passes time like a good book read aloud. Just like at the library, you can search for titles, place holds, and request books be purchased.

Check out OverDrive or Libby to start borrowing audio and e books for free!

Traveling with Children

March 22nd, 2018 | Behavior, Family Fun, parenting, Teens, Toddlers, travel
Traveling with Children

“Travel can be an enlightening and eye-opening experience for children of all ages: there’s new foods, experiences and sights, not to mention quality family time. But traveling with children can also be an overwhelming proposition — unpredictable schedules, long packing lists and cranky kids are just a few of the challenges you may encounter along the way. But here we’ll help you make traveling with kids a breeze. After all, you and your children should enjoy every moment seeing the world and create a lifetime of memories along the way. Isn’t that the point of travel in the first place?”

Read the New York Times article on travel with children
photo: https://catherinecooper.wordpress.com/2011/04/11/travelling-with-kids-products/

How to Raise an Emotionally Resilient Child

How to Raise an Emotionally Resilient Child

“All children, even the most fortunate, suffer emotional injuries. At home, in school and on the playground, all children experience disappointment, frustration and failure; criticism and disapproval; and exclusion by peers. In every family, there will be moments of anger and misunderstanding.

In healthy development, children recover from these moments. Whether on their own or with our support, most children bounce back. Emotional injuries are, in many respects, analogous to physical injuries. Just as our cells must repair physical injuries, emotional injuries also must be healed. Without this healing, the injurious process will spread.”

http://www.pbs.org/parents/expert-tips-advice/2015/11/how-to-raise-an-emotionally-resilient-child/