It’s hard to think of anything more likely to spark resistance than asking a kid to stop playing a video game. The games are designed to be so consistently rewarding that they’re very difficult to put down, especially for children, which is why it’s important that parents are firmly in charge of screen time. For parents who want to avoid gaming problems, or for kids who already have them, behavioral scientist Nancy Petry, PhD, outlines a strategy for getting, and keeping, gaming under control.
This week on childmind.org we offer the basics of Dr. Petry’s strategy, which involves not only setting firm limits, but helping kids develop off-screen activities that are rewarding to them. “It is crucial,” she writes, “to ensure that your child develops, maintains, and enjoys other, non-screentime activities.”