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Apr 7, 2021

This week, we are revisiting a listener favorite from September, 2020, as we prepare the lineup for our upcoming season: Perspectives. Starting April 21, you’ll hear perspectives from experts on sleep, eating, and parenting philosophies, among other topics, so you can make informed choices for your family.


Few topics will spark debate among parents more readily than screen time. It’s so controversial! Screens are everywhere. And avoiding them can feel like the domain of super-human parents. Learn some tips to cut down on screens from Dr. Screen-Free Mom: Meghan Owenz. She runs a website, Screen-Free Parenting, with over 27,000 active participants. She is also an Assistant Teaching Professor at Penn State University.


Key Takeaways:

[1:46] What does screen-free look like for Meghan’s family?

[2:24] Meghan shares her alternatives for keeping kids engaged and busy.

[3:23] Use her S.P.O.I.L. system to cut down on screen time.

[4:38] How can independent play be achieved so parents can have a break too?

[6:37] Rotate favorite toys in and out of special baskets so that they feel fresh.

[8:18] Does screen-free mean more stuff? There are ways around it: Something as simple as a scarf can offer miles of road-trip diversion.

[9:37] What does the science tell us about the effects of screen time on kids?

[11:17] Meghan shares research findings on attention.

[12:13] Meghan talks about how language is impacted by screens.

[14:00] What about connecting with grandparents or friends over Zoom or FaceTime?

[16:13] How does Meghan help parents wean their children from screens?

[18:08] What does becoming screen-free look like?

[19:38] How can a parent enforce a screen-free approach? She provides advice around changing rules with a toddler, as well as older children.

[22:45] Jessica provides a recap of an eye-opening conversation with Dr. Meghan Owenz.


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Screen-Free Parenting