Skip to main content

Screen time refers to any time that kids spend looking at a screen. This could be playing games on a tablet or computer, watching television, or playing on a mobile phone. Spending time on screens becomes part of the normal routine of kids when they start school.  

Some screen time can have great benefits for kids' learning, but too much time spent looking at a screen can affect growth and development. Screen time should not reduce time spent sleeping or being physically active. Screen time should not replace activities such as reading, drawing and social time with family and friends, as these are essential for the child's full development. 

Screen Time Guidelines

Screen Time Guidelines for Kids


See Australia’s 24 Hour Movement Guidelines for more information  


Tips to manage screen time 

  • Tips to manage screen time include: 

    ·        Eat together as a family without screens  

    ·        Keep screens out of the bedroom  

    ·        Take toys or books instead of a screen when going out  

    ·        Set time limits for screen time  

    ·        Stop using screens at least 1 hour before bed  

    ·        Be a good role model - reduce your screen time too   

    ·        Swap screens for quality time as a family (go for a walk, play card games, or board games)  

    ·        Cook or garden together to develop life skills  


    When using screens, choose programs and apps that:  

    ·        Encourage movement, such as dance or exercise  

    ·        Encourage creativity, such as drawing or making video clips, animations, or comics  

    ·        Require problem-solving  

    ·        Support communication skills, such as language skills  

    ·        Help develop social skills  

    ·        Promote positive messages about relationships, family, and life – avoid those that display violence and bad attitudes  

    ·        Encourage kids to take up new activities away from the screen  

    ·        Are age-appropriate 

Source: Department of Health & Australian Institute of Family Studies