Positive Parenting Newsfeed—a Child Trends Project—is Supported by the National Science Foundation

Less Screen Time = Smarter Kids?

screen time

ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — Nearly 98 percent of kids in the United States live in a home with at least one mobile device. Nearly 60 percent of children ages 5 to 8 have their own tablet. While it’s becoming harder to limit screen time, a new study shows that children of parents who set restrictions on recreational use of their devices may perform better on tests.

Kids today are consumed by screens, but a new study suggests that the less time spent in front of a screen, the better. Researchers looked at 4,500 kids ages 8 to 11. They found that those children who used their smartphones and other devices for less than two hours a day performed better on cognitive tests assessing their thinking, language, and memory skills. The Canadian 24-Hour Movement guidelines recommend that children ages 5 to 17 get at least one hour of physical activity each day, have no more than two hours of recreational screen time, and get nine to 11 hours of sleep. The researchers found that only five percent of the kids studied met all three of these recommendations. Sixty-three percent of the children spent more than two hours in front of screens.

Apple recently released a new advanced parental control system to help monitor kids’ screen time and Google now has features to limit screen time and monitor use on Android devices.

Contributors to this news report include: Cyndy McGrath, Supervising Producer; Julie Marks, Field Producer; Milvionne Chery, News Producer; Roque Correa, Editor.

Produced by Child Trends News Service in partnership with Ivanhoe Broadcast News and funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation. 

(Source: https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lanchi/article/PIIS2352-4642(18)30278-5/fulltext#%20)

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