Researching interesting facts on the Web or going online to get homework help is one thing, but when your child uses the computer to play video games for hours on end, there may be cause for concern. Not all video games are bad, of course; there are some educational computer games that can even teach your child a thing or two, but in this case, quality isn’t the only thing that matters. Quantity is important too.
### How Much Is Too Much When It Comes to Video Games?
Although setting a specific time limit for your child’s gaming is something that only you can do, there are some warning signs you should be aware of that can alert you to a potential problem:
– Video games are your child’s only hobby.
– Your child would rather play video games than hang out with his friends.
– Your child doesn’t want to leave the house, even for a fun activity.
– Going to school has become even less appealing for your child.
– Your child tries to hide how much time he spends playing video games.
– When your child isn’t playing video games, he’s talking about playing video games.
– Your child cries, throws a tantrum, or becomes very angry when game time is over.
– Your child’s grades have been on a steady decline.
If any (or all) of the above statements describe your child, then it may be time to begin limiting his access to video games. While he will most likely protest, you can rest assured that you’re doing the right thing by protecting him from some of the negative consequences of too much gaming including depression, loss of communication skills, digital obesity, a life void of social interaction, and in extreme cases, computer game addiction.
### What You Can Do: 5 Steps to a Video Game Intervention
If you recognize that your child is indeed spending too much of his time playing video games and not enough time in the “real” world, there are some things you can do to help.
1. First of all, you’ll want to have a chat with your youngster. This chat should be a firm but friendly one; there’s no need for a confrontation. Calmly explain to your child that you’ve noticed he may be developing a bad habit and that you want to help.
2. Take the time to explain some of the negative side effects of playing too many video games.
3. Put some boundaries in place. Make your expectations very clear as you explain how much time your child will be allowed to play video games each day (including weekends).
4. Stress that these new limits are being put in place to protect him, not punish him. Also let him know the consequences for going over the allotted time.
5. Follow through.
### How Qustodio Can Help You Monitor Your Child’s Gaming
Most parents do quite well with steps 1-4. It’s the 5th one—the follow through—that many parents find challenging. Parents simply don’t have the time to police their children, looking over their shoulder every 5 minutes to make sure they’re following the guidelines. That’s why so many moms and dads are finding Qustodio to be such an invaluable tool. Our new app monitor helps you keep track of not only your child’s online activity, but his video game usage as well.
App Reporting Feature in Qustodio
When you download our free parental control software, you can set weekday and weekend limits for your child’s video game time and set the system to alert you or even lock the computer when time is up.
Time Limit Feature in Qustodio applies to Internet and Apps
Interested in learning more about how Qustodio’s app monitoring feature can help your child practice healthy gaming? Visit Qustodio.com today or download the parental control software to see the results for yourself!You’ll also receive reports detailing your child’s activity, so that you’ll always know how he’s spending his time, even when you’re not around.