We at Screen Time HQ have been reminiscing about our childhood experiences of Christmas. The turkey, the presents, the tree, the films, the occasional family drama, the Rod Stewart tape playing on the stereo (just us?) All experienced, on the whole, together with our families.
Zoom forward a couple of decades and suddenly there are two new guests at the party – the smartphone and the tablet. There is often more than one in the room, and they get a lot of attention.
With 20% of parents set to purchase a device for their kids this Christmas, this scenario isn’t about to change any time soon.
If we were to zoom forward another two decades to a time when our kids are all grown up, what memories would they have of their childhood Christmases? Would they fondly reminisce about that family game of Charades? Or would they have one brief memory of shooting baddies on a screen while occasionally scoffing cookies?
This is clearly an extreme case. But we at Screen Time know only too well how easy it is to lose our kids to their devices. And that argument – the one that can happen when you try to detach child from screen? It’s a daily challenge for a lot parents and one we would all rather avoid over the festive period.
This isn’t so much of a problem for the parents who use our app. Even so, we thought it might be useful to share our pick of the gifts that might just make your kids switch off their devices without any fuss and join in with some family Christmas fun. Creating some offline memories in the process.
Even better, each one will give your child’s brain a bit of a workout in different areas. We’ve made some cute icons below to demonstrate:
It seems that Hatchimals were so popular they have already hatched and flown away from the shelves this Christmas. For those of you who didn’t get your hands on one, here’s an alternative. No, it’s not quite the same as an egg that hatches before your very eyes, but surely nothing beats excavating a dinosaur? And there’s plenty of post-excavation dino nurturing potential if the kids put their minds to it.
2. Pie Face
Do you have a teen who spends a large proportion of their time posting selfies on Snapchat? If so, what better way to break the ‘selfie spell’ than to splat a pie in each others faces? Also, there is a strong chance all smartphones and tablets will be absent from the table due to a high risk of ‘device death-by-whipped-cream.’
Put the experimental part of their brains to good use with this aesthetically pleasing microscope. And with so many outdoor-based options for scope analysis like leaves, dead bugs, pond water etc. you’ve got a great incentive to get them outside and breathing some fresh air into their lungs too. Win-win.
It goes without saying that a
skateboard has a vast array of benefits such as exercise, confidence, coordination, fresh air, street cred, mildly decreased chance of you feeling like an underappreciated cab driver…
It also provides a proper break from being online. Skating and web browsing = not a clever combo.
Music has been scientifically proven to increase *deep breath* brain power, memory, social skills, confidence, patience and happiness all at the same time. We also like how these electric drums roll up so they can travel with your children to their friends’ houses for jamming sessions (do people still say jamming? Answers in a tweet please).