How to Secure iPhone for Children Screen-Time
No one can deny that offering a game on a smartphone can provide a convenient distraction to your child while you are busy with your work or taking a much-needed moment for yourself. However, as a parent, you should keep in mind that entertainment media is everywhere and, without proper monitoring, your children will be easily influenced and bombarded.
Did you know that children nowadays spend an average of seven hours a day of screen time? Yes, some screen time can be educational, but too much of it will cause negative effects to your child's development and overall well-being.
What are the risks of too much screen time?
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, too much screen time can negatively affect the cognitive function of your child. It can also affect their sleep, social skills, and health.
The following are some of the risks of excess amount of screen time:
- Obesity. Believe it or not, too much screen time can actually cause obesity. That's because your children are exposed to commercials for junk food, fast food, and soda while watching television or ads in YouTube videos. As such, your children are more likely to crave foods high in fat and sugar. Children who spend excessive amounts of time in front of a screen are also less likely to be active.
- Inconsistent Sleep. Your children are most likely to have trouble falling asleep or maintaining a regular sleep schedule due to more screen time. This risk is increased if you let your children use their mobile phone before bed or while being in bed.
- Problems with behavior and attention. Excessive media use can lead to difficulties in school, attention problems, hyperactivity and behavioral issues.
Children nowadays spend an average of seven hours a day of screen time
(Photo credit: playgroundprofessionals.com)
What are things you can do to secure your children's screen time?
Your child may watch screens all day if you let them. As such, it is important that you set limits. Here are some tips to help regulate your children's screen time.
- No screen time for children under age of 2. Remember, the first two years of life of your child are the time of rapid brain development. It is during these times that your children learn best by socializing, playing and exploring. As such, time away from a screen encourages healthy physical and social development.
- Reduce screen time to only 2 hours a day. You should encourage you children to do activities such as coloring books, puzzles, and crafts. You should also reserve a special family time to go for a walk or play a board game together.
- Create a screen-free zone in your home. You should designate at least one room in the house that is free of TV, computer, smartphones, and other electronic devices. YOur children's screen-free times can be mandated at appropriate hours, like during dinner or before bedtime.
- Use parental controls on your child's iPhone. With Content and Privacy Restrictions in Screen Time, you can block or limit specific apps and features on your children's device. You can actually restrict the settings on your iPhone for explicit content, purchases and downloads, and privacy.
How to use Screen Time on your child's iPhone?
Screen Time enables you to have access to real-time reports, showing how much you or your child spend on your iPhone. You can also set limits for what you want to manage.
The following are the steps on how you can turn on Screen Time on your child's iPhone.
- First, go to Settings > Screen Time.
- Next, tap Turn On Screen Time. Then tap Continue.
- After that, select This is My [device] or This is My Child's [device].
After you turn on Screen Time, you will see a report showing how you use your device, apps, and websites. If it is your child's device, you can actually set up Screen Time and create settings on their device. You can also use Family Sharing to configure your child's device from your device.
After you set up your child's device, you can use Family Sharing to see reports and adjust settings from your device.
Screen Time can be useful to regulate your child's time using their device. That's because you can create a dedicated passcode to secure settings. As such, only you can extend time or make changes.
Keep in mind that you should make sure to choose a passcode that's different from the passcode that you use to unlock your device. If you want to change or turn off the passcode of your child's device, simply go to Settings > Screen Time, and tap [your child's name]. After that, tap Change Screen Time Passcode or Turn Off Screen Time Passcode, and authenticate the change with Face ID, Touch ID, or your device passcode.
The Screen Time feature gives you a report showing how your child's device is used, apps they opened, and websites they've visited. If you want to see the report, all you need to do is go to Settings > Screen Time and tap See All Activity under the graph.
From there, you can see the usage, set limits for the most used apps, and see how many times the device was picked up or received a notification.
If you turn on Share Across Devices, you can view overall usage devices that are signed in with your Apple ID and password.
Here are some of the settings you can manage using the iPhone's Screen Time:
- Downtime. When you schedule downtime in Settings, only phone calls and apps that you choose to allow are available.
- App Limits. You can set daily limits for app categories using the App Limits. Keep in mind that App Limits refresh everyday at midnight.
- Communication Limits. You can control who your children can communicate with throughout the day and during downtime. Communication limits apply to Phone, FaceTime, Messages, and iCloud contacts.
- Content and Privacy Restrictions. You can decide the type of content that appears on your child's device. Through Content & Privacy Restrictions, you can block inappropriate content, purchases, and download, and set the privacy settings.
Why refurbished iPhones are good phones for kids
Everyone knows how expensive smartphones can be, especially if they are brand new and the latest model. And the truth is, most parents are not confident to hand over an expensive mobile device to their children who will most likely damage it to some degree.
Refurbished phones are best suited for you if you are looking for mobile phones that offer some excellent advantages at an affordable price. If you are shopping for refurbished devices from a reputable store, you will find that these phones look and work like new. And since you know how much kids break stuff, you can be assured that the device you get comes with a warranty, making the cost of the repair or replacement steep or, in most cases, free.
If you have safety concerns, you will be relieved to know that refurbished phones are safe and double and triple checked to ensure that the best quality product will be given to you.
Another thing that makes refurbished phones perfect as your children's device is the fact that you don't have to start a contract with a network and waste more money by paying a monthly amount. You can go with a SIM-only plan from a network of your choice.
However, if you want a contract, you should look for capped. You should look for one where limitations are put in place so your child can't exceed their monthly allowance. After all, kids are avid social media users, uploaders, and serial snappers. As such, you need to consider a fairly large data allowance.
Most refurbished phones also come in unlocked condition, particularly if you get them from QwikFone. Having a refurbished phone unlocked means that you will be able to use your old SIM card and phone number with the device without having to go through any additional steps with the service provider. You can also be able to travel with your phone without facing any restrictions regarding using local carriers in different countries.
You can decide the type of content that appears on your child's device
(Photo credit: cms-tc.pbskids.org)
What are the best phones for kids?
Searching for the best mobile phone for kids can be a bit harder than finding the right smartphone for adults. For one, the best phones for children tend to be more about having the bare essentials without overwhelming your child with options. Whereas when you are out shopping for a mobile phone for adults, you are aiming for a device that contains the best features.
Additionally, mobile phones for children depend on the purpose and age of your child. For example, if you are looking to buy a phone for your youngest child, what you need is a device that you can restrict to only calling and texting.
The following are some of the mobile phones that are easy to adapt for a child's use.
- iPhone SE. Referred to as the most affordable iPhone that will last. This is the best iPhone choice for kids since this is the cheapest as well as the smallest. Due to its size, you child will not struggle over a massive phone. Refurbished iPhone SE is a good choice since it's still in very good shape and has all the functions your kid will need. You can also get your child a case for its fragile glass construction.
- Nokia 3310 3G. Everyone has fond memories of the original 3310, a phone that is so tough that even if you dropped it, you wouldn't need to buy a new mobile. While the Nokia 3310 3G isn't as tough as the original, it is still reassuringly chunky and makes for a really great children's phone.
- iPhone 8. One of the best iPhones for people who have strict budgets. This phone has a solid camera, wireless charging and comes with all the advantages if your family uses Apple products like the iPad and Mac. If you want to look for the best discount for this model, you find that QwikFone sells the best and most affordable iPhone 8 refurbished unlocked in the UK.
- Nokia 105 v5. While this device is very similar to the Nokia 3310 3G, the Nokia 105 v5 is purely 2G. This means that this phone couldn't use the internet and is mainly focused on the essentials such as calling, texting, and playing Snake.
- Moto G8. This smartphone is a very capable Android device that will keep your child connected at a low starting price. The Moto G8 has Android 10, decent cameras, good battery life, and a plastic build that won't smash too easily. It also comes with a 64GB storage that should be enough for children's app and photo needs.
- Honor 10 Lite. Referred to as a perfect phone for selfie shooting. The Honor 10 Lite is not too big and not too small. It has good online storage and has a decent processor with 3GB of RAM for impressively smooth performance. It also has a pre-fitted screen protector to guard against drops as well as a big battery, and a selfie camera with a whopping 24 megapixels and rear camera with a clever dual-camera setup.
- Moto E6 Plus. This phone's core device is solid and smart with a 13MP main camera and an 8MP one for selfies. The Moto E6 Plus has a decent octa-core processor, expandable storage via microSD cards and a long-lasting 3,000mAh battery. While it runs Android 9, it is still a sensible phone to buy for your kids.