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Mommin’ Ain’t Easy: The Screen Time Debate and a Few of Our Favorite Apps

Today we are talking about screen time.  The experts have debated it, the mom world has debated it, your doctors have debated it.  Everyone has an opinion and we all know what they say about opinions.  There is the mindset that screens are adding to our obesity epidemic-that may be right.  There is a mindset that screens are adding to a number of different problems that our society faces in this day and age.

All of the theories may be true, but what I am certain is true, is that none of these experts, or doctors or sanctimommies live in your house, with your kids, with your particular set of skills for making you crazy.  I feel that unfairly, screen time gets lumped into one harshly judged category.  I mean, even I will agree that hours of mindless TV watching isn’t great for any part of your health on a regular basis.

Screen time at our house is just part of our day.  We have a 3 year old that needs to be redirected when mom is trying to cook dinner or needs 15 minutes of quiet time before she runs out the front door never to be seen again…  We do some mindless TV watching in our house.  I mean without it, how would we introduce the Disney classics to our babies and help them harness a love for singing Disney theme songs.  Seriously, there aren’t many things cuter right now than my E singing “How Far I’ll Go” every night at bedtime to me.

We are also believers in educational apps.  Our family has used them for reading and learning phonics.  We also have apps that have helped to improve problem solving skills and fine motor skills.  Bottomline when it comes to screen time at our house, we believe all things in moderation are best.  Outside play and reading always come first but there is time for screens and the enjoyment we all get from them!

For your enjoyment, I am including below a list of our favorite apps we are discovered over the past few years of screen time indulging at our house!

Add your favorites to the list.  We are always on the hunt for new ones!!

  1. My Little Jigsaw Pony Puzzle:  My 3 year old E loves this app.  It is basically exactly what it says, a touch screen jigsaw puzzle.  You can choose from 4 pieces all the way up to 144 pieces.  I have been amazed at how she has excelled at this app/game.  Some of the puzzles are difficult but she’s managed to progress along in it and improve fine motor skills and problem solving
  2. Sushi Monster:  We downloaded this at the request of our 7 year old C.  It is a fun app that reinforces math facts and fluency.  It has definitely helped him with reasoning skills and he thinks it is just a video game!  WIN!
  3. Hooked on Phonics Learn to Read:  This has been a great asset to have as C navigated through Kindergarten and even now in to 1st grade.  The edition that we have is the classroom edition that we scored on teacher appreciation day at a discounted rate.  Even for full price I’d recommend it!
  4. Monkey Preschool Lunchbox:  Warning-turn the sound off on this one or you’ll be hearing it in your sleep!  This is one of our all time favorites.  We found this when C was 3 or 4.  It has learning colors, shapes and numbers activities.  It also has a matching game inside that helps with memory and problem solving skills and a puzzle game that helped with fine motor skills.
  5.  Tiny Hands Towers 2:  This is another puzzle game that we used for E when she was just exploring her fine motor skills.  Fun pictures, bright colors, E still loves to play this one now!

I apologize, these are all available for iPhone/iPad but I do not know about Android.  We are Apple junkies around here!  What are your favorite apps?  Post them below, we are always looking for new material.

Check out my video on this topic!