If your child is watching more than two hours of television per day, you'll want to spend some time working on a plan to reduce his or her screen time. To limit TV time at home:
- Don't use the TV as background noise. Only have it on if someone is sitting down watching a specific program.
- Use the sleep feature on your television to force the TV to shut itself off after thirty minutes.
- Allow your child to choose specific programs. Wait until the selected show is on to turn on the TV.
- If you have TiVo or a DVR, record a few of your child's favorite shows and allow him or her to view them at specific times during the week. Once they've been watched, delete them from the recording device.
- Avoid using TV for winding down. Instead, read a book together or allow your child to listen to an audio book.
- Provide a TV viewing chart for your children, and teach them to plan out the shows they'd like to watch during the week.
- Avoid using the television during play dates. Instead, let the kids enjoy playing together.
- Finally, choose your child's television programs carefully, and take the time to preview shows together. Talk about what you like about certain shows, and what gives you caution about the shows you do not care for.