School aged children likely have some experience using technology. Depending on the parents preferences, there will be different rules about media and technology use in the home. Nannies and parents should work together to establish media and technology guidelines for the children and ensure that they are consistently enforced. These guidelines should address the types of content that is accessible, how much screen time the child is allowed and how media and technology use is monitored.
When caring for children, nannies should always ensure that computer or tablet use is supervised, limited and monitored. This often means that the best place for use is in an open area like the living room and dining area where supervision is easy to achieve. It is also important to remember that children with Internet access should be taught Internet safety and those safety lessons should be reinforced on an ongoing basis.
When supervising screen time, nannies should help the child choose appropriate applications and programs to reinforce and build on the child’s existing skills and knowledge. She should also be sure that the applications and programs accessed fall within the parents definition of acceptable as outlined in their established guidelines.
When considering guidelines, nannies should be familiar with current recommendations. The American Academy of Pediatrics, for example, recommends that parents establish “screen-free” zones at home by making sure there are no televisions, computers or video games in children’s bedrooms, and by turning off the TV during dinner. It further recommends that children and teens should engage with entertainment media for no more than one or two hours per day, and that when engaging, it should be with high-quality content. It is also important to note that the Academy continues to stress the importance of children spending time playing outside, reading, engaging in hobbies, and using their imaginations in free play.