Technology and Your Toddler

Nowadays, most kids can navigate a tablet better than their parents. Is this a bad thing? With all this modern technology, how do we continue to provide a safe environment for our kids, but still allow them to learn and have fun on our smartphones, tablets, and all the other gadgets on the market?

View Episode Transcript

Featured Expert

Featured Segments

  • Parenting Headlines

    What are the top news headlines for new parents? We’ll comb through all the articles and discuss the main issues impacting families around the world. Have a topic you want us to discuss? Post them to our facebook page!

  • Protecting Your Children

    Everyday, families become victims of predators seeking to cause you and your children harm. Parent Savers teams up with Escondido Police Department’s Family Protection Unit and the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force to help families stay safe and secure.

Episode Transcript

Parent Savers
Technology And Your Toddler

Please be advised, this transcription was performed by a company independent of New Mommy Media, LLC. As such, translation was required which may alter the accuracy of the transcription.

[Theme Music]

Johner Riehl : Almost half of all Americans now are on a smart phone. It seems that these days most of the kids can navigate a tablet better than a parent. With all this modern technology how do we create a safe environment for our children but still let them have fun and still learn on our phones and tablets? I am Johner Riehl, the founder of and co-author of the Modern Parent’s Guide For Kids and Video Games and this is Parent Savers, Episode 18.

[Theme Music/Intro]

KC Wilt : Welcome to Parent Savers, broadcasting from the Birth Education Center of San Diego. I am your host, KC Wilt. You can now take Parent Savers with you wherever you go. Our Apps are now available in the Amazon Android Market and the iTunes Apps store. They have great like the ability to Star your favorite episodes and as well as instant access to the most recent episodes and the social networking sites. So, it’s another great way to get parenting information. In other way, just subscribe to our Parent Savers Newsletter. It’s featuring exclusive behind the scenes contents from our show, special giveaways, discounts and more. So, visit our website for more info. I am a new parent myself. My son Carson is now 20 months old and I am joined by four new parents here in the studio.

Owen Hemsath : Hello, again my name Owen. I own a Video Marketing and Website Development company in Oceanside. I have got three kids, a 5 year old, a 14 month old and a 4 week old.

KC Wilt : Wow! That’s a lot of kids.

Owen Hemsath : Yeah, we haven’t slept for a while, we don’t need to sleep anymore.

KC Wilt : Yeah.

Todd Wood : Hi, my name is Todd Wood. I am 40 years old. I work for the department of Defense. I have one daughter who is 15 months old.

Ben Martin : Hey, my name is Benjamin Martin. I am 26 years and I run a business in Oceanside, custom graphics, wood working etc. I have a 2 month old little girl. I am really short on sleep, case cancelled [Laughs] and it’s awesome, I love it.

Collin Rand : Hi, my name is Collin Rand. I am 32 years old. I have two wonderful boys, one is 5 years old and the other is 2 years. And, they give a run for my money every single day.

Ben Martin : They give me a run for my money in between I want a sprite and no lettuce on my taco.

Collin Rand : It’s very picky sometimes with my kids meal situations but I also own a entertainment company as well.

[Theme Music]

[Featured Segment: News Headlines]

KC Wilt : Today, in our news headlines here is the line “drop the pasta dad and no one gets hurt” and it talks about how once you start having kids, you know, if your kids are picky eater like you were just saying, your kids are picky eater, they leave this on the plate, they leave that on the plate. Well, what are dads for? They’re the little garbage pile, you know. You shovel it into your mouth and everything else is…….. Is that actually true in your house?

Owen Hemsath : The problem with me is Kanan loves his grains. So, he will leave half a burger on his plate and……

KC Wilt : Eat the bun.

Owen Hemsath : You see the problem is that my plate is so full anyway but his leftovers become my late night snack.

KC Wilt : Yeah.

Collin Rand : Yeah, I actually figured that in restaurants now, I order less for me knowing that I am gonna end up eating more.

KC Wilt : That’s a good idea.

Collin Rand : Chicken Nuggets are so good, just give them 20 pieces Nuggets of McDonalds, I am not gonna get anything.

Ben Martin : I ask for kids menu.

KC Wilt : Well, this article said that they found the father’s risk of obesity raises 4% with each child and the mother’s raises 7% more. I mean that’s obvious but is that women have hormonal changes? So, what’s your excuse?

Collin Rand : Tasty, you know, I mean I think that there is less time. For me, I feel it obligation you know, it’s no longer about taking care of myself, I am taking care of my family. I almost feel selfish if I am taking time away and it’s wrong, I shouldn’t do that you gotta take care of your body but I was in the bed sheet when my first son was born and now 5 years later I am not there anymore.

Owen Hemsath : You have reached into the quire. I was in Adonis, I was literally in the gym, 3, 4 days a week. I was in the best shape of my life. I was doing 5 K's and 10 K's, I was mountain biking. That’s what I think attracted me or attracted my wife you know, what I mean? Then we had kids almost right away. So, I actually…… I am still in decent shape. I got married at a size 32 waist. I am now size 35ish waist and I got a health test and I was obese for the first time in my life.

KC Wilt : Really?

Owen Hemsath : Yeah, you know, my body BMI, you could argue that a little bit scientific it actually is, but it actually it was a wakeup call for me.

Collin Rand : I don’t know what you guys are talking about but I have lost 30 pounds. [Laughs]

Owen Hemsath : I know Collin since high school, we are both, we are both, we have got some weight to lose.

KC Wilt : You were about to say something about that?

Collin Rand : Nothing.

KC Wilt : Okay, well actually the article said “not only do we finish our food but it’s palate” so, it’s our refrigerators and dinner tables have begun to bend to the palate of our children. So, have you been eaten goldfish I mean, did you have gold fish when you were in 20’s, you know?

Owen Hemsath : Yeah, absolutely.

Collin Rand : The multi colored or just the orange?

Owen Hemsath : The flavor blasted. These new finned gold fish, what do you do with them?

Collin Rand : The thing that I find especially with my kids because they are picky eaters like Owen said earlier but they are healthy eaters. In the fact that I am having my own plate and I am eating fast to try and get to them to help them eat as well and what I am doing is I will go and get a second helping to actually show them “hey, look guys this is actually really good.” So, I am trying to set that as examples of you need to eat these either vegetables or this protein like salmon and my 5 year old son Lucas, his favorite if you ask him his favorite dinner is salmon and broccoli.

Owen Hemsath : Which is awesome.

Collin Rand : Which is really cool but what I am finding is he is watching me eat and then he is not eating himself so, I am going to get more say “Okay, let’s have a contest. Who will eat more here?” So, it’s a little different “Yes, I am eating more. I am going to get a second helping” but it’s more to set an example of you know of “What you need to eat.”

Owen Hemsath : You know, what I eat less at home and more it’s like insane, you wanna spend time with your kids so, I rush home just to get home for the end of dinner. And I picked up some Wendi’s on the way and my wife hates that, you know, I had dinner here but it’s like “yeah, you are already an hour into it and I wanna go be with my kids you know”, you know what I mean, because I get home may be at 6 or 7 o’clock that’s right to bed time. So, I get home I don’t wanna sit down and eat, I wanna help clean them up, give my wife a break, play with the boys for an hour before they go to bed. So, you know, you have got that fast food thing that happens. And that happens pretty often in my line of world.

Collin Rand : Yeah, I mean there is no doubt that the convenience of food that sometimes you can just fall in love with it and get in patterns with let’s get go with the easy stuffs as opposed to the healthier stuff which takes a little more time to cook the healthy stuff, it’s great to get that in your life.

Owen Hemsath : And I don’t get me wrong, it’s not that we completely get away from the fast food or the convenience of getting something quick to go and that can also come back. And it’s a double and short when you are trying to set an example of what to eat. They will look at you and see that Samoan and Broccoli eat it but they will also see you eating the double, the double or the, you know, and they go “Oh! I like that. Dad’s eating that so, I must eat that too, you know.”

KC Wilt : I guess we should not quote that in the article that says “you’re eating food is not helping anyone else who is starving” So, I guess remember that one.

[Theme Music]

KC Wilt : Today on Parent Savers, we have Johner Riehl, author and video game insider, plus he is a concerned dad here to talk with us about “Technology and our Toddlers” with the ever present smart phones and tablets. So, what do doctors say about this?

Johner Riehl : Well, you know, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommends the kids under 2 have no screen time at all. But, I don’t know that’s very realistic. And the thing about those studies is technology changes so quickly that there aren’t really a lot of established studies for doctors to look at to see the impacts of current technology and smart phones on kids today. So, what they do is they go to the screen that’s been around for long, the screen that’s been around for what 60 years, 50 years now. The TV, and they base a lot of research on TV. So, lot of that is based on seeing the impact of kids sitting in front of the TV watching a show and saying, “you know what, kids under 2 years and they don’t need that in their lives”. But, these screens on Tabs and smart phones are little bit different so, there is some doctors that say, you know, there’s some doctors that point to that and say “don’t do it. If you can’t avoid it, don’t do it.” There are some doctors who say “you know what, its fine. There is really nothing to worry about that much. Just don’t do it too much and do it a little bit in moderation.” So, you will see different opinions from different doctors. The official line is no screen time under two but I think we can probably all attach a little bit just not realistic and not the reality of the world we live in today.

Owen Hemsath : Okay, well my question is, I have a 5 year old and a 2 year old and my son, the oldest loves to watch TV. What do I do with the 2 year old while he is watching TV? Can I just say, “he can watch it but you can’t”?

Johner Riehl : Yeah, exactly I mean when you start throwing older siblings into the mix, you know, all the kids want I mean starting at we have a 15 month old now I mean starting at about, you know, 10 or 11 months you know, they just wanna do what their brothers are doing, what their sisters are doing, what their parents are doing. And if I see people playing with a device watching TV and if you have got a 5 year old watching Finis and Fern or busy time mysteries and your 2 year old is gonna be sitting next to him and get stuck in the show.

Owen Hemsath : No, the difference with the TV and this kind what you are talking about TV is not an interactive device. You know, the TV delivers the message to you whereas the video game requires a response. You know, my 15 months old or the 14 month old do love the smart phones. And as soon as it asks him to do something he is out, he doesn’t read it you know what I mean, he has his finger on the screen the whole time and it pauses the game so to speak. So, there is a difference there.

Johner Riehl : Yeah, exactly so, there is inter activity to these tablets and apps and there is definitely this level of, you know, kids need to be old enough to kind of understand that. I think when kids, even like before one year old you know kids want to just grab everything and put it in their mouth, I think that aspect is the first. I mean they see their parents with it all the time.

Owen Hemsath : Yeah.

Johner Riehl : I mean it’s, I need to do a better job but I am sure we all do, we check our phones, we check our emails, we see what’s going with the score in the game. And kids see that and they wanna, kids just wanna grab whatever everyone else has and I think it starts like before they turn one, they just wanna chew and see what it tastes like. But when they get to maybe around 18 months old I think they start to figure out that “Hey, this can actually, I can control this” and that’s when they start kind of understanding that it is more than just…..if it’s asking something and they don’t throw it away then they kind of start realizing “Hey, I can slide that bar across” and kids can do that before their second birth day.

Owen Hemsath : There is a viral video online that showed, it was a few months ago, it showed a little girl with a magazine, did you see that?

KC Wilt : Yeah.

Owen Hemsath : And she had the iPad and she’s, you know, flipping through, not yet, she’s flipping through but she is actually engaging it and then they give her a magazine and she is doing the same thing with the magazine and can’t understand why it is not doing anything, you know. [Laughs] And that was under 2 years old type of it’s a brave new world you know that, we are in here.

Johner Riehl : Absolutely! When you think about it, I mean, these kids growing up now I mean are, this generation they are not gonna know world without touch.

KC Wilt : It’s crazy.

Johner Riehl : It’s weird to them.

Owen Hemsath : And some amazing touch screens, these are not like, I had a tablet computer, you know, the screen flipped around, it’s just theme in 2007, those were the beginnings. This is a whole new type of technology that is it’s incredible.

Johner Riehl : It’s gonna be to them, if you can’t touch a TV or the screen and manipulated on it, I mean it’s gonna be like us looking at the phone with a cord on it, what’s the point in that?

Collin Rand : It’s interesting we were just traveling, my son we, we stayed in a hotel and he picks up you know, the hotel has got the big you know, rotary phone or whatever. And he goes and he picks it up and put the receiver on his ear and my wife and I were just like “How did he know that, that was a phone?” you know, because he has never seen this device before but there is some intuitiveness about that you know, he does the same thing with the remote control. So, you know……

KC Wilt : My son does it with the calculator.

Collin Rand : Alright, exactly. Yeah possibly, it could be, it could be.

KC Wilt : So, what’s the potential negative effects like addiction or anything like that?

Johner Riehl : Well, so, there is lot of, you know, as I was saying there is not a lot of studies that are really done so lot of the negative effects are anecdotal and I think that the things that we have seen that we have read about. I have read a recent general story in the Wall Street Journal about this reporter who…..they took a cross country trip with a 2 year old and they said it was just amazing, They played with the ipad, they watched it, they played a couple of games, they watched videos, they loved it. But then they started to notice that every time they would give it to her, she would just get this laser focus and completely shut out the world and it started disturbing them. And so, I think that, that’s one of the concerns that it’s legitimate and I don’t know that there is any quantifiable data that I found about it. But I think parents can kind of use their guts and say “Yeah, I think that there is something that’s drawing the men and it’s too much. And it’s the detrimental things to the outside.”

Owen Hemsath : I think that you are also conditioning your child to the screen and that’s my biggest concern. I studied Media, I have a degree in Media and the violence cause or the video games cause violence today, rage is on even in these days. And I think what the big problem is we see the same thing with my 5 year old. He lays the focus on the device and afterwards there is a really bad attitude, disobedience, rebellion, it’s like, I get hyper tension “This is not my son” you know, and we look at it like this really odd behavior that’s coming as a result of “I wanted to be in that video game where I am beating up bad guys and I am using swords and using knives” even on these docile video games but even on the kids games. You are popping balloons and you are shooting balloons arrow at the alphabet and things like this and you are conditioning them that fun comes from the ding and then when get into more aggressive games and more aggressive TV shows, they are still, it’s they go from the smart phone to now the television to another movie screen to another computer screen and gaming and so on and so forth and you’re creating that. That’s what I worry about when it comes to the addiction.

Ben Martin : Yeah, and I think the issue becomes that smart phones and tablets are really good and provides really compelling experiences for kids and for grownups that they want to play with it. I mean, I would wonder if he was engaged in a magical play and his puppet teeter at home and he was pulled away from it for some reason, if he might have some of the same reactions because he was so engaged and engrossed in the world.

Owen Hemsath : Yeah and I don’t know that I, he gets that engaged in those.

Johner Riehl : Alright.

Collin Rand : Well you know, I think one is the conditioning and two is the convenience of what we have available. But it’s also, I think it’s up to the parents to determine what’s on that smart phone? What’s on that tablet? If we have games that we enjoy playing as adults that may be a little more fun and useful for us to play but are too much more for the kids to be playing and we allow them to use those. We have got it straight from what we actually should be giving our kids at that point but if we give them the availability to painting with your finger on the tablet or learning you’re A, B, C or you know, a talk back type of application were you are talking to a cat and it talks back to you, that kind of thing.

KC Wilt : “Meow, meow”

Collin Rand : Yeah, exactly if we give them those type of interactions to do, is that necessarily going to instill some type of value of this is fun in a positive and principle way as opposed to this is fun in a destructive and tormented way. And if we give that I don’t see a problem with letting them use that on a regular basis.

Johner Riehl : Yeah, I think parental engagement and involvement is key. I mean that the parent need to know what’s on tablet, what’s on the smart phone, especially you know, really for kids of all ages but especially for the youngest kids you need to make sure that you know what they can possibly be accessing and ideally that you are finding some apps that they can get in and they are not gonna get out. I mean, we all know that there are these crazy apps that’s given to you that are free to play and they encourage you to go click through and buy more stuff and do things in game and especially for even kids under 4 years old they don’t understand that. And for 2 year all they need like you are saying didn’t even want to be asked to do many different fun things, they just wanna watch things and may hear a couple of funny noises and that interacts them.

Owen Hemsath : Right, and that’s the, you know, that’s one of the things we, we were looking for in smart phone apps is some interactivity, some stimulation and looking for some hand eye co-ordination and things like that and other benefits. I mean, are you seeing, do you have any ideas as to what benefits there may be in this type of activity?

Johner Riehl : Well, yeah, I mean certainly there are definitely, you know, there is educational benefits not only through the co-ordination but through this idea that this generation is so different and the technology is gonna be part of their lives like are they, you know, some parents may ask are they not going to be, are they going to be the disadvantage if they don’t know how to do these skills. Alright, and so, I think that, that’s one of the benefits and I think that these phones in addition to hand eye co-ordination and you know, kind of facia recognition with some of these puzzle games, they can teach the basics too. They can help these tools to kind of augment learning that A, B, C’s the colors, the shapes and all those things are definitely a lot of great education.

Owen Hemsath : Now, you talked to some of these social psychologists and what not about like the Baby Einstein and these other types of programs and it’s all great work. I can’t understand how my kid hearing the alphabet and hearing colors is not doing something positive but they will tell you, hey, there are no benefits to this.

Collin Rand : But I completely disagree with that in my, from my experience with my son, my oldest we did nothing but give him Brain Baby and Baby Einstein’s and he knew his full alphabet by 18 months.

Johner Riehl : Well, that scores a great point. You know, researchers and studies can say all it is but parents we gotta follow our gut and we gotta go by experiences and follow our gut and kind of see “here is what I think”. I am a little bit concerned with the vision right now, yeah how can it not be good for him to hear this classical music.

Owen Hemsath : My kid knows the theme song to cheers, he will sing everybody’s name.

Todd Wood : Was it important from the play together with the children with these devices?

Johner Riehl : Well, you know, it’s a good point. It’s important because then these don’t have to be, the concept they were talking about here isn’t necessarily here, let’s just hand the kid the smart phone or not hand the kid the smart phone. You can play together and be engaged and just playing with them and benefits of play are well documented for parents to engage with their kids. It’s super important to play with your kids because you are coming up with common experiences doing them together. You can, there are apps these days like there is a virtual T party app that, you know, there isn’t so much as a game. It is you set the tablet down on the table, you decorate it, you pick up the table cloth, you pick up the tea cups and the idea is you sit around with your kid and stuff the animals and you kind of pretend it as a tea party using that is sort of a way to augment how you are playing. You know, it is not necessarily the proposition of “Oh! Let’s just get them completely sucked into the world.” May be these can be used as tablets for something for other great…….

Owen Hemsath : And you can be having conversation during, you know, over a tea party so to speak. You know what I mean? You can be talking about your day or what you like to do and, and you get into an imagination because one of the concerns for me with lot of the corporate style games, you know, they were movies and other games and action figures. The kids will play the movies and they get stuck in, you know, my son for example, has his you know, star wars figures and he plays the star wars movie. There is no new game there. There is no new adventure. It’s always this is episode 1 and this is episode 2. And so we try to get in there and use the light savers in a different way, you know, and we make up a new battle to get him thinking outside of that programming that’s kind of trusted on him through visual stimulation. And so, I like that idea for the tea party game and other games like it because it gets a conversation going and it’s not a system.

KC Wilt : Well, the reality is though, to be honest when I hand my child the iTouch it’s to get him out of my hair so….[Laughs]

Owen Hemsath : No doubt about it, no doubt about it.

KC Wilt : And I understand that I play with my son’s stuff but it is with train on the ground with tracks and stuffs like that but so, is it okay to play without parental supervision?

Johner Riehl : Yeah, I mean, I think that, that’s fine. I think it goes over to Collin’s point earlier about parents need to know what it is they are playing. I mean you wouldn’t want to just set your kids free on either your phone that has an appropriate content on it or a game that you have never checked out or tested before. As long as you know and you are confident on what the games that they are playing, I don’t think that there is a problem and I think that we can talk little bit later about some good time limits and some ideas for times. But, yeah it’s definitely fine; I think that what is the common sense to me is I was looking up the stat that 40% of kids between 2 and 4 years are playing with their smart phones and I actually think that’s going up now.

KC Wilt : Yeah.

Johner Riehl : I think that study was about a year and a half old and I think that the number is got to be over 50% now. It’s just a fact and reality of life and how great to get that moment of just kind of relief when your 18 month old…[Baby screaming noise]

KC Wilt : It’s the only way my husband and I get dinner together at a restaurant.

Johner Riehl : I can see how you get that. When my kid, my 14 month old has a $400 dollar device in his hands, I am not calm. You know what I mean? But if, for us it’s the old phone, it’s the recycled you know, we bought the new generation and the kid gets the older generation.

KC Wilt : Well, actually we had a comment on our Facebook page by someone who wanted to mention that there is a Fisher price type thing and it’s like 15 buck and just take your phone and, and the best part of it is my son always likes to push the button so, when he is playing a game he pushes the button and it’s over. This beat part of it is it has a screen across the button and they can’t push the button, they have got handles and he can throw it on the ground…..

Johner Riehl : We have seen it, we love it.

KC Wilt : So,

Johner Riehl : How cool is that, that company kind of embracing it and that also underscores the point if everyone are really following this American Academic Pediatric recommendation then are letting kids playing that too, Fisher price wouldn’t be making the toy.

KC Wilt : We will on be that reality or whatever so,

Johner Riehl : Exactly.

KC Wilt : So, when we come back we will talk about good apps for our kids as well as teach you about parental controls. So, we will be back shortly.

[Theme Music]

KC Wilt : We are back with Johner Riehl, here to talk with us about technology and our toddler. So Johner, what are some good apps for our toddlers or even younger?

Johner Riehl : Yeah, so I mean I have, I have got a list here of some games, some apps I said games and you know, really it kind of draws a line between the two. It’s kind of good for broad range of ages “Zoo Train” by this company called Busy Bee Studios and it’s great for young kids, 2 year olds, 3 year olds and, you know, what you can find is games like this if you can find a place like Busy Bee, it’s parents that work there, it’s parents that designees and they have young kids. So, they make them with that in mind so, if you search for them on the Apps store you could see all the apps but Zoo Train and Bugging are the couple that they have. But another app that is really great is apps called the Moogies.

KC Wilt : Moogies, spell that one?

Johner Riehl : M-O-O-G-I-E-S and what it really is, it is an interactive cartoon and it goes to the point that earlier about, you know, kids not necessarily even want to do much with it and just interact. Then you get these scenes of these animals doing funny things may be there is a horse exercising or a mouse in a laboratory and you touch different parts and different funny things happen like the exercise ball blows up and the horse goes flying across the screen.

KC Wilt : Wow! Cool.

Johner Riehl : And it’s just different ways that they can keep interacting in the funny environment and as we all know 2 and 3 year olds will just do the same thing over and over and over again. And so, that’s the Moogies and it’s pretty good.

Owen Hemsath : That’s interesting because we with the 14 month old, Jameson is always pressing the buttons and he presses the ads and stuff like that and you know, it’s like “Hey, get me back to where I was” we put on music and give it to him.

Johner Riehl : Nice and they just like look into at the album cover.

Owen Hemesath : Yeah, exactly and they can forward through the song and go to the next song and what not but that Moogies app, it sounds like right up his alley because he is even old I think he is almost 2 years I guess. But you know, I need to give him something that would just go and there is not gonna be pop ups, there is not be gonna like you were saying getting out of the apps.

Johner Riehl : And that’s the key I mean, it’s really hard to ask people to spend their hard earned money on things and it’s so easy when they are so many free apps available you think “let me just go see what’s hot in the free apps?” But you know, these apps that I am kind of talking about they may be cost 99 cents, maybe it’s a dollar and 99 for a couple that I am gonna talk about but you can be sure that once they are in the apps they are not getting out of it, they are not being exposed to these extra ads or extra rates.

Ben Martin : I get 4.99 for good apps though I mean, my kid you know occupied.

KC Wilt : I did 4.99 for an app that teaches me Spanish.

Ben Martin : Did you really?

KC Wilt : Yeah and actually it was awesome, I loved it, I was playing it every single day because it was a, I had all, I had so many different levels. So, I just moved up in the level and had games to play so….

Johner Riehl : The thing I think about is if I am gonna spend 99 cents on app or a dollar and 99 or 4.99 on an app for my child to be interactive and to learn something and to be captivated for short amount of time or am I gonna go and spend $10 dollars or $11 dollars on a bored game that he is not as into you know,

Owen Hemsath : Swallow the pieces?

Johner Riehl : Exactly, so 99 cents or 10.99.

KC Wilt : And that’s why I like the suggestions because I feel like when you ask me to $5 for an app and I don’t know what it is then I am not gonna buy. I know there is review and stuffs like that but we will have Johner in some more segments on Parent Savers telling us about some more apps we can do to download. But, how long should we let our kids play?

Johner Riehl : Well, that’s, you know, there is no exact guideline and that kind of goes parent to parent. I think that once kids even really before their second birthday may be around 18 months, they are really not gonna play long enough that I think they are gonna be concerned about before they kind of lose interest and wanna move on. I think their attentions pay kind of short term; they approach the second birthday that’s where they might wanna start thinking about setting limits. For us, we do something around 20 minutes or you know, slowly may be build it up to half hour as they get older you build it up. But I think that an important tip in what, you know, we recommend in some of our books and what other experts say is you know, balance out that play time. If they are on the screen, you know, make sure that they have at least a minute or two for every minute that they play on screen that they are playing outside and sort of engaging real world play. I mean enforce it and time it and you know, set a timer to countdown the time to play or keep track. If they play for 20 minutes make sure they spend 40 minutes outside.

KC Wilt : That’s a good idea.

Owen Hemsath : Not outside, banging on the window “can I come in and play video games again?” because you are gonna get that you know, lot of the games have, I think they will have timers. I don’t, I don’t mess with controls.

Ben Martin : Yeah, you know what I have a 2 month old, pretty older than that. So, help me out here. How do you use parental control like nap or anything like that like if I am going into ads or anything else?

Johner Riehl : It’s, it’s super important and this is by the most important that any parent is gonna let their kids play with the tablet that a smart phone need to do and Apple and the other devices may get really easy. You go into the settings on the device and usually device related and not app related.

KC Wilt : Okay, so settings related and not app related?

Johner Riehl : Yeah, so you need to go the settings on the device and you know, there is, there is a thing called in app purchases you know, for example, if you wanna make sure disable that, that takes away at any chance.

Ben Martin : Absolutely. They are not spending $299 here and 99 cents there.

Johner Riehl : A true story, our 3 year old was playing a smart game with a $120 worth of Smurf berries. And you know, there has been you know, this was a couple of years ago and they kind of changed how they deal with the passwords and there were some shady if you read about the subject.

Owen Hemsath : You can’t trust the smurfs though. {Laughs]

Johner Riehl : Yeah.

Owen Hemsath : That was a shady smurf.

Johner Riehl : Yeah, exactly but you know, you can turn off the ability to do in app purchases, there is chances of you are not gonna miss it using it on your phone and make sure that the kids are not gonna be able to do it. Now, you can also tweak other things and other ways that they can access information through the setting on the device and that’s the key.

KC Wilt : We are all sitting here everyone’s got iPhone now, working on the settings and changing.

Johner Riehl : Yeah and I can make sure to give that info to KC to make sure you can post on the site.

KC Wilt : That’s sounds great.

Johner Riehl : Or get a link to it on our website.

Owen Hemsath : Or get the app, Parent Savers app.

KC Wilt : Thanks so much to Johner Riehl for helping us learn about keeping our kids entertained and educated safely. If you want more information on Johner’s businesses go to today’s show on our episodes page on our website or visit

[Theme Music]

[Featured Segments: Protecting your children]

KC Wilt : Before we wrap up today’s show here is a segment on how to better protect your children.

Damian Jackson : Hey, Parent Savers this is detective Damian Jackson with the Escondido Police Department Family Protection Unit and the internet crimes against children task force here in San Diego, California. As part of the Escondido police department’s ongoing series of community outreach education to help families and enhance their personal safety, I am here to talk today about family stickers on the back of your car. You know the ones I am talking about why on earth do you have them those on there? Every time I am driving behind someone that has stickers, I wanna get out of my car the next red light, pull out a razor blade and scrape those things off the window. Of course you are proud of your family, who wouldn’t be? They are the most awesome people in the world and then you are prior to enjoy. So, what’s the harm in having these stickers? Let me paint a scenario for you to ponder. Let’s say a local child predator spent some time driving behind you turning in the names on the stickers on your black window. I mean, you have them all conveniently listed right down from the family dog. Then they happen to have a chance to cross one of your children and has this little exchange with them. “Billy, Billy, Oh! I am so glad that I found you, your dog, red scott hit by a car and your mom Jennifer had to go and get your sister Alice and take her to the veterinarian. Hop into my car real quick and we will call your dad Bob on the way over there.” Well, as you can see what might seem like an innocent stickers on the back of your car can open you and your family out to be victimized by predators. If a stranger walked up to you somewhere and asked you what your children’s names were, would you tell them? Of course you wouldn’t so, why would you openly advertise at the hundreds of strangers every single day on the open road. Scrape those things off and protect your family’s privacy. For more information on how you can help, keep your family safe, visit us on Facebook or twitter at https://forward/ With the Escondido police department and the San Diego internet crimes against children task force, I’m detective Damian Jackson reminding you and your family to be smart and be safe.

KC Wilt : That wraps up today’s episode. We would love to hear from you. If you have questions for our experts about today’s show or on the topics we discussed, call our Parent Savers hotline at 619-866-4775 or send us an email through our website or Facebook page and we will answer your questions on an upcoming episode. Coming up next week, we are talking about “Secrets to getting your baby to sleep through the night.” Thanks for listening to Parent Savers, “empowering new parents everywhere.”


This has been a New Mommy Media production. Information and material contained in this episode are presented for educational purposes only. Suggestions and opinions expressed in this episode are not necessarily those of New Mommy Media and should not be considered facts. For such information in which areas are related to be accurate, it is not intended to replace or substitute for professional, Medical or advisor care and should not be used for diagnosing or treating any healthcare problem or disease or prescribing any medications. If you have questions or concerns regarding your physical or mental health or the health of your baby, please seek assistance from a qualified health care provider.

[00:33:18] End Of Audio

Love our shows? Join our community and continue the conversation! Mighty Moms is our online support group, with parenting resources and helpful new mom stories you won’t find anywhere else! You’ll also have a chance to be featured on our shows.

Become a Mighty Mom!