6 Ways to Get Teens off Screen Time

With everything from drivers ed to classtime going virtual, screen time isn't anything we can avoid. If studies show that teens were spending an average of seven hours per day on screens {not counting homework}, imagine what it must be like now that everything has gone virtual. I'm actually noticing screen fatigue from my sophomore in high school, who is on a screen daily from 9-2:30 for school and again from 6-8:30 for drivers ed. It's a lot. So how can we encourage our teens to seek other activities that are off of a screen? I've got a few ideas up my sleeve that might help.


Getting Teens off Screen Time:
6 Ways to Get Teens off the Screen

These are just some ideas to help your teens beat the screen fatigue. What is working for your family?

helpful tips to get teens off screens

1. Be a Good Example

Listen friends, I'm putting this one out there first because our kids are watching us for cues on how to handle life. If we sit down and immediately pull out our phones to scroll they see that. Fight the urge to pick up your phone whenever you are bored, and instead strike up a conversation, grab a book, look around and people watch, whatever. Just don't grab for your phone first.

Don't miss this: 10 things to do on your phone that isn't scrolling

2. Find a New Hobby

There are plenty of things your teen can do that doesn't involve a screen. When a snowstorm hit a few years ago, I started a jigsaw puzzle on my dining room table. I was surprised at how quickly the teens got involved in helping me put it together. They are looking for mindless activities, after all, it's why they aimlessly scroll. 

Some ideas to try:

Diamond Art
Lego {yep, they aren't just for little kids}
Mega Dot to Dot
Coloring Books
Try a Subscription Box

getting teens off screens

3. Encourage Physical Activity

Encourage your teen to get some physical activity. This could mean walking or biking to the local store, playing a game of catch, or taking up a new sport like disc golf. Hiking is a great outdoor activity too. 

Love scavenger hunts? Try geocaching where you use your GPS to find hidden objects. Find out more about geocaching.

Physical activity is important for your teens physical and mental well-being and it's an important disciple to start early on.

reading a book for teens

4. Read a Book

Teens rarely read books for pleasure anymore it seems. Why would they when they have enough to "read" on their phones? This is a great time to encourage reading time. If your teen has a long lunch break, encourage 20 minutes of free reading. Your teen might be reluctant at first, but once they get into a book, I think they just might get hooked!

5. Plan a Game Night

Family game night happens quite often at our home. We have a few favorites we've been playing non-stop like Catan, Trekking the National Parks, Cover Your Assets, and 5 Second Rule.  Teaching card games is also another skill that will take your kids far in life. It's one of those universal activities teens can participate in. I'd love to hear what some of your family favorites are.

teaching teens life skills

6. Learn a Skill

When the kids are small it feels like they are going to be around forever, but once you start launching kids you realize how fleeting the time actually is. There is a lot they can learn at home from their parents and the adults in their life, so encourage teens to learn a new skill. Maybe you participate in a DIY project together, teach them how to cook or sew, or work on the car together and teach teens basic car maintenance. 

Pin this for later:

screen fatigue alternatives for screen time for teens

I'd love to hear what your family is doing right now. How are you fighting the screen fatigue and making sure the whole waking day isn't in front of a screen?

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