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Do you count ‘listening to music’ on the phone (w/ headphones) part of your kid’s daily device time? This is a new one for me. I say 1 hr per day (& I’ve allowed 2 hr daily for summer) of device time for my 11 year old. However, she also wants to listen to music while drawing, etc. I’m not yet sure how I feel about that extra time. I’d like to hear your opinions and what your household does in order to get ideas and better formulate a solid policy here. 

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Not at our house -- We do 1 hr/day of "fun" screen time (console video games, minecraft, netflix, etc) for the 9,12, and 14 years olds.  Using devices for school/educational stuff doesn't count, and screen time that has some other purpose (coding, creative writing, creating D&D characters, playing D&D while keeping character stats on a screen) needs to have a brief "check-in" with me if it goes over an hour to make sure that the whole day in the summer doesn't get spent on a screen.   Music listening is fine any time since it is basically always done while doing something else.  Audiobooks are also "basically" fine any time (especially if it is listening to a book while doing something else), though for my youngest who might sit all day and do nothing other than listen to a book, I will sometime cut him off after a couple hours and tell him he needs to move his body, interact with his brothers, etc before more listening. 

I really don't monitor this for my oldest (just turned 17) - she is close enough to being on her own that I left her monitor her own screen time/device usage and I would only step in if I thought there was a problem or her grades were slipping or something like that.  She spends a lot of her free time video chatting with friends and I wouldn't dream of putting a limit on that given that her best friends live out of town and she hasn't gotten to see them very much in the past year and a half.

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My Ds cannot resist the lure of a screen, so we got him a smart speaker for music. No limit on listening unless he is not getting necessary things like school work or chores, done. 

Edited by ScoutTN
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Heck no I wouldn't count it as part of screen time.   Listening to music is therapeutic for many of us.  We always have music on in my home.   I also clearly remember as a teenager I couldn't concentrate on school work unless I had music playing (my kids are the same way).   Music is always acceptable around here.

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The only reason I would set up limits is that some kids at some ages (like mine!) will find the lure of the device too strong as they're clicking around looking for something to listen to. I just set limits on the device itself. Freedom is a great little app, if the device you're using doesn't have a good set of built-in controls. 

I have also started taking DD11's phone at night, because she'll keep herself awake listening to podcasts, and if she wakes up at night (pretty common), she'll start clicking around on Spotify looking for something to listen to. She has a smart speaker she can use if she wants some music or other sound to fall asleep, but for the past few weeks she's been fine falling asleep in silence. 

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I guess I would limit it if she's experiencing Netflix syndrome (spending almost half as much time clicking around to find something "good" as it is to watch a movie).

On a personal note, I think I would have DIED in Jr. high if my access to music was limited to an hour. :laugh:

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I don’t limit music, podcasts, or audiobooks. But he uses a smart speaker with bedtime limits, 7-7.

Unless he’s grounded. I never thought taking away audiobooks would be impactful, but here we are. He cleaned the baseboards and vacuumed yesterday in exchange for the speaker back. 😆

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  • 4 weeks later...

When I was a teen, I used to listen to music all the time, even when doing homework. I think that it's totally fine and there's nothing bad about listeting to music but we need to make sure that our kids' online time is safe. We need to teach them not to share personal data on social media, protect from sensitive content, limit screen time only if it is harmful. That's my point of view. I maybe wrong.

I have also found a great article about staying safe online. Maybe it could be helpful. 

https://custom-writing.org/blog/staying-safe-online  

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On 6/24/2021 at 1:04 PM, Earthmerlin said:

Do you count ‘listening to music’ on the phone (w/ headphones) part of your kid’s daily device time? This is a new one for me. I say 1 hr per day (& I’ve allowed 2 hr daily for summer) of device time for my 11 year old. However, she also wants to listen to music while drawing, etc. I’m not yet sure how I feel about that extra time. I’d like to hear your opinions and what your household does in order to get ideas and better formulate a solid policy here. 

As teens, our VS-learner / artistic DS#2 needed to listen to music to help him focus while doing a lot of his school work. We did not count that as device time. (Listening to music with earbuds was actually a helpful concentration device -- a type of "therapy" tool for him.) There have been studies that show that music and math share some parts of the brain, so that would explain why listening to music helped DS focus with math. I could also see how listening to music would be a helpful tool while doing art.

Screen time (and internet access) was what we limited here -- and we did so all the way through high school. It is the visual aspect of screens and how they "rev" and rewire the brain that was of concern here. Listening to music does not have the same negative impact on the brain.

Edited by Lori D.
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