Navigating Screen Time: Guidelines for Different Age Groups in Early Childhood

In our increasingly digital world, screens have become an integral part of daily life, offering both opportunities and challenges, especially for young children. While technology can enhance learning and entertainment, excessive screen time can have adverse effects on development. As educators and parents, it’s essential to establish healthy screen time guidelines tailored to the specific needs and developmental stages of children. Let’s explore age-appropriate recommendations for screen time in early childhood to support healthy growth and development.

Infants (0-12 months)

  • Screen Time Recommendation: Avoid screen time altogether, except for video chatting with family members.
  • Rationale: During the first year of life, infants learn primarily through sensory experiences and interactions with educators. Excessive screen time can interfere with bonding, language development, and sleep patterns. Instead, focus on activities that promote physical interaction, such as talking, singing, reading, and playing.


Toddlers (1-2 years)

  • Screen Time Recommendation: Limit screen time to no more than 30 minutes per day of high-quality, educational content, under adult supervision.
  • Rationale: Toddlers are beginning to explore the world around them and develop essential skills such as language, motor skills, and social interaction. Excessive screen time can impede these developmental milestones. Choose interactive and educational apps or programs that engage toddlers in active learning and limit passive screen viewing.


Preschoolers (3-6 years)

  • Screen Time Recommendation: Limit screen time to 1 hour per day of high-quality, educational content, under adult supervision.
  • Rationale: Preschoolers are curious learners who benefit from age-appropriate educational content that reinforces literacy, numeracy, and social skills. Encourage co-viewing and interactive engagement with screens to enhance learning outcomes. Balance screen time with plenty of opportunities for active play, creative expression, and social interaction in the real world.


Regardless of age, it’s crucial to prioritize quality over quantity when it comes to screen time. Choose age-appropriate, educational content that aligns with children’s interests and developmental needs. Monitor screen time usage, engage in co-viewing and co-play, and maintain open communication about digital media habits within the family. By establishing clear guidelines and fostering a balanced approach to screen time, families can support healthy development and well-being in early childhood and beyond.

At Learning Blocks Child Care Centre we focus on setting up experiences that help improve your child’s, language, motor skills, social skills, literacy, numeracy skills with less reliance on digital screen technology at their age.  Above is a guide that you will find useful in ensuring a focused approach to support your child’s growth.

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Looking for more information on understanding the role of play in your child’s early childhood development? Click the link below to learn more.  

The Power of Play: Unveiling the Role of Play in Early Childhood Development

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