“What time can we start screens in the morning?”
“What time do we have to get off screens?”
“If I get dressed, can I go back on screens?”
“We’re so bored. Can we have screens?”
“Alexa, make an announcement . . . ‘TIME TO GET OFF SCREENS!’”
I get especially twitchy when I feel our son and daughter are spending too much time on screens because “screen time” today is very different now than it was when they were younger.
Back in the day, they’d eat their Goldfish crackers together at their child-sized table and chairs, watching episodes of Bubble Guppies up on the living room TV. They were mostly zoned out, of course, but at least they were together – and my husband or I was nearby, half-listening. It felt OK.
But now they’re miles apart from each other even when they’re in the same room. They each have headphones clamped on their ears, connected to their own devices. Our 10-year-old son is either on his computer or his Nintendo Switch, and our eight-year-old daughter is either on the Chromebook or the tablet.