How Families Limit "Screen Time"

Math Learning Game Beta

DreamBox Learning K-2 Math Beta

We had about 30 children in the DreamBox office over the last few weeks, beta testing the upcoming version of our online math learning games – DreamBox Learning K-2 Math. I had the opportunity to talk with their parents about computer usage at home, and got to hear first hand how concerned parents are about the time their children spend in front of the TV, computer, and video games. The overwhelming majority limit their children’s “screen time.”

How Much Screen Time Should Kids Have Per Day?

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that parents limit screen time to no more than two hours per day including television, videos/DVDs, computers, and video games. ( has listed some practical tips on how to limit your child’s video game time in compliance with this recommendation.) But almost all of the parents I spoke to felt it should be much more limited than that. I heard that for these families, on average, most kids play on the computer 3 to 4 times a week, for about 20-40 minutes at a time. And in a sign of how self-directed and computer savvy kids are at a young age, most said their child is initiating computer play and very often deciding what sites to visit and what activities they want to do. In some cases, parents allow more computer time for educational activities – which I took as good news for the future of DreamBox Learning K-2 Math!

For more see our post on filling that screen time with healthy programs and games for kids.

  • Gregory

    If a child is unable to self-regulate online surfing or gaming, parents should set rules around the use of Internet I think. Games and Internet have caused nothing but trouble for my Family. My Son spent long hours online and played games like nothing else matters. Tearing him away was not as easy as you may think (even setting his alarm sneaking out of bed @ 3am to play which results in him falling asleep in class). We have had to compromise of the past few years by giving him a little time to play (set time limits with Internet filter called Ez Internet Time ) Ez Internet Timer is the only possible way I know of to stop my child from going on of the internet