- June 22, 2016

Limit Summer Screen Time with OurPact


summer-screen-ourpactAh, summer. 79 long, lazy days teeming with possibility. Our family welcomes each school year’s end by making a bucket list of everything we hope to see, do, and experience before the first day of school comes again too soon. No idea is too far-fetched and everyone’s contribution receives equal weight. This list will be my saving grace when the inevitable chorus of I’m-boreds begins in a week or so.

We start strong. Last Friday, for instance, we crossed a whopping three items off our list in just one day! But as the days grow longer and hotter, my will to leave the comforts of air conditioning will weaken. The fighting between my two sons will approach WWE proportions. The challenge of completing my workload at home during normal waking hours will get trickier. And the temptation to enjoy the peace and quiet brought about by a little screen time will grow with every day.

We aren’t a super techie family. Much to their chagrin, my kids don’t have their own phones or tablets. Even still, a quick count brings our household tally to eight mobile devices. If given the opportunity, my children would lose most of a day, eyes glazed, staring at a screen, playing games and watching YouTube videos.

Enter OurPact–a tool to help manage screen time with kids, rather than for kids. With the OurPact app, parents and children can work together to set reasonable schedules and limits on multiple devices, with the goal of developing good habits. OurPact even provides a family contract that can be posted on the fridge to remind everyone of the promises that have been made. When the kids have a great day, it’s easy to reward them with the allowance feature. When things get out of hand, blocking all usage is just as easy.

My goal this summer is to find the in-between…a balance between the technology-driven entertainment my kids expect and the free-range parenting of my dreams. Mutiny or not, I’m trying something radical this year: implementing two screen-free days every week this summer. Two days set aside for my boys to rediscover their imaginations; for me to disengage from work and my social media addiction; for an old-school summer of lemonade stands, mud pies, skinned knees, bike races, cardboard forts, and roving packs of neighborhood friends; for more joyful adventures and fewer screens.

What will those five days look like when the screen ban is lifted? As much as summer calls for laziness, the interwebs don’t allow for that. I’ll have to be diligent managing my kiddos’ time and content wisely. The OurPact app not only helps manage screen time, but also helps with blocking specific content (internet, social media, and apps). Limits and expectations will be set to ensure that we don’t devolve into a houseful of drooling tech zombies or–worse–that my boys stumble upon content their sweet eyes can’t unsee. And maybe–just maybe–with less time wasted on screens and more time spent reveling in our bucket list, they’ll realize all of those devices are overrated. Make it a great summer, yall!

Looking for help managing your kids’ device usage?

About OurPact

OurPact is a leading parental control app for iPhones, iPads, and iPods that makes it easy for you to set limits on how much time your children are spending on their mobile devices. OurPact is now also available for parents on Web, Android and iOS through its Web Application. Create schedules, block all Internet and app use at a moment’s notice, or reward them with the allowance feature.

OurPact was born from the idea that responsibility can be taught through technology. Providing a realistic take on parental controls, OurPact allows parents and children to use the world of mobile to strengthen their relationships through communication and compromise. By giving parents the power to set individual device schedules, OurPact encourages children to listen. And that gives you a chance to work out agreements, help them form responsible habits and talk about the issues relating to technology in their lives. OurPact can help you balance the risks and rewards of iOS and Android technology for your family, with ease.

We shared this sponsored post from OurPact because we love the message: less screens, more adventure! Have a wonderful summer, getting out and exploring Austin! If you’re looking for some inspiration, check out this checklist of 100+ Austin Summer Adventures.