As a parent, dealing with my kids having a cellphone has been a blessing and a curse. Everyone has different opinions on what age is appropriate to allow them to have one and why but that’s a discussion for another time. The topic of this post is how to manage your kids’ iPhone, which became a giant pain in the rear as they got older. Until now… thank you, Apple.
(We are a Mac family so I apologize for not having info on Androids. Anyone with information on different phones, please share in the comments below.)
I used to take the phones up each night, often resulting in my kids attempting to engage in negotiations… often resulting in arguing. I’m just going to be honest here and admit that I was not always the immovable oak I would like to have been. Sometimes I flat forgot, sometimes I just wanted peace, sometimes I had been the oak 100 times during the day and I just couldn’t do it again at that hour when it was time for bed.
Then it happened… Apple updated its IOS (internal operating system) for the iPhone and it included SCREENTIME!!!!! This was a game-changer in a lot of ways but, unfortunately, the original version only controlled certain things and I still had to take the phones away at night. So it was wonderful but not yet perfect.
Even so, my kids were super frustrated because most of their friends’ parents didn’t know anything about screentime and they felt it was unfair that I did. So, it has been my privilege to share with many of my parent friends all about screentime so their kids could be as miserable about it as mine. LOL
I’m kidding… sort of.
Seriously though, I found that parents were eager to use these tools to manage the phone, they just didn’t know it existed.
Well, the recent IOS update by Apple added additional features that allow the scheduled downtime to turn off the calling, Face Time, and messaging except for programmed specific numbers! The schedule is even customizable now so that you can schedule different times for the school week and the weekend. I am so very happy! I don’t have to take the phone away anymore. One less debate, negotiation, or argument with four teenagers! 🙂 The phone is now only good for very few selected functions during the downtime (at night) but they can still call or message family in case of an emergency.
I hope you find this as helpful and stress-relieving as I have. For more specific information on how to use screentime, click on this link to an article by PC Magazine that provides details on how to set it up.
Please share your tips and tricks for managing your child’s media in the comments below. This is a safe space for sharing information and asking questions. Please refrain from making judgments, speaking unkindly, or being disrespectful to our participants. The administrators have the right to delete any comments they see as outside the boundaries of promoting a healthy, respectful conversation. Thank you in advance for your cooperation.