When she was under 2, she did not get much screen time, if any. I knew that screen time was not recommended under 2 for early brain developmental reasons, so I avoided it. Plus, were always busy, had tons of play dates, she came with me to the gym, traveled monthly, she was my first... there was really no need to "use" screen time.
And, SHE WAS AN ACTIVE BABY. There was no sitting her down, for one minute! She was always nonstop and even after she turned 2 and I tried to watch a kid movie with her... she wouldn't lol.
Once the pandemic began, she was older AND we suddenly completely stopped our play dates, parks, gym, big outings... we had to resort to home-activities and she definitely started to want / like it more.
That is when my dilemma began... How to limit it? What's "right"? Is it hurting her?
I learned that, the more she watched, the more she wanted it. And some days she never wanted to stop: drama began. Some shows zoned her out, which I hated. And it made her less interested in other home activities & less creative.
I to find the right balance for US. So here's what I learned:
1. Limit it to an hour total a day approx.
2. Be strategic about WHEN, and use it wisely. We actually don't use it in the car unless its a real emergency lol (you know what I mean) we plan the longer car rides during nap time and short she has coloring activities. We also don't give her screens when we are out eating (if we have to take turns walking until food gets there, we do). We rather use it at home & when needed, especially since it’s always us two, it helps us more at home than out as well.
3. Monitor what she does: learning apps, Spanish cartoons, developmental games, more interactive shows... (those she doesn’t zone out and stops w zero drama) but she does love her cocomelon too lol
Overall, I think every household is different, do what works best for YOUR family and what YOU feel is right. And remember, we ALL have "survival mode" days too. No shame.
How do you deal with screen time for your toddlers & kids?
Here's the device we use for developmental apps and games: shop