‘Two-Minute Warnings’ Make Turning Off the TV Harder

Excerpt from this article:

New research shows that giving a child a “two-minute warning” before turning off a video game or TV show does not make it easier for a child to turn away from a screen. In fact, it makes it harder.

…Parents reported that their children were significantly more upset, more often, when given a warning that screen time was about to end than when screen time was stopped without a warning.

…The researchers had a theory: maybe instead of easing a child’s transition away from screens, a two-minute warning prepares them to fight it.

…Programs that automatically repeat or show previews immediately after a show is over can make it difficult for a child to turn away from a screen. Parents were also successful in easing transitions by blaming the technology, declaring the battery dead, the Wi-Fi broken, or pretending that a program a child watched on vacation was not available at home.

“What the technology itself did made a huge difference,” said Ms. Hiniker. “If the technology was backing the parent up, and kind of saying ‘screen time is done now,’ then things went better than if the parent just told the child ‘you’re done.’”

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