Sep 15, 2022

A Tech-Intentional Parenting Manifesto

A Tech-Intentional Parenting Manifesto

A Tech-Intentional Parenting Manifesto

A Tech-Intentional Parenting Manifesto

Image of little boy through glass car window
Image of little boy through glass car window
Image of little boy through glass car window

Above all else, we want you to know that we love you no matter what.

Being a kid (and a parent) in the digital age is hard. It’s hard for you as a kid and it is hard for us as parents. Things change faster than we can keep up with. We want you to know that our efforts to set limits around screen use reflects our deep desire to both protect you and nurture you as you grow.

We want you to engage with the world– the real world. We want you to see the beauty and the mess, the chaos and the calm and we want you to see yourself as an important part of that. We want you to observe us, your parents, valuing time in nature, in conversation with people, and in doing activities that do not require a screen. We want you to know that it is possible– and indeed wonderful– to find joy in these things.

(Little girl in unicorn hat sitting at the base of a giant old growth tree)

As a family, we will build courage by doing hard things, like prioritizing relationships by delaying access to smartphones and social media, setting and modeling limits, and asking questions about screen use in school settings. We will approach these as your teammates and allies, not your enemies or adversaries. We know that we’re fighting to protect your future mental, emotional, and cognitive health. We will include you in that fight and help you understand why it is so important.

We will be parents who assess and reassess our own use of screen-based technology and hold ourselves to the same standards. We will look closely at our use of personal devices for work, socializing, entertainment, and household management. We will be humble when our own tech use interferes with our values or relationships. We will have to be willing and open to feedback and change.

We will trust you, but know that we do not trust all things online. We trust you to tell us when you see something that scares you or makes you uncomfortable, and you can trust that our reaction will not be to punish or shame. We appreciate honesty and will always offer our support in problem solving.

We recognize that many young people find virtual communities of connection. We want you to find communities offline, but we also understand that eventually, some of those experiences may be online. When that happens, we hope you will find ways to balance real life with virtual life, real friendships with digital ones.

(Two kids on the couch, faces blocked by personal screen devices)

We will not always find this a smooth path. There will be many zigs and zags, and we will make mistakes. So will you. Mistakes are a part of life. We want to help you see mistakes as opportunities for growth and change, not as failures or deficits. We hope you see our mistakes as trial and error too, as we figure out how to parent in this unprecedented era.

In our family, being tech-intentional means using screen-based technologies that enhance, nurture, and support us. It means resisting, delaying, or limiting screen use that interferes with healthy mental, physical, cognitive, and emotional development. It means learning about resilience and strength by making choices in alignment with our values, not from our anxieties or fears.

We are tech-intentional because we love you and we want you to love the world you are an important part of.

The Screentime Consultant Logo Footer image

Emily Cherkin’s mission is to empower parents to better understand and balance family screentime by building a Tech-Intentional™ movement.

Copyright © 2024 The Screentime Consultant, LLC | All Rights Reserved. | Tech-Intentional™

and The Screentime Consultant, LLC™ are registered trademarks.

The Screentime Consultant Logo Footer image

Emily Cherkin’s mission is to empower parents to better understand and balance family screentime by building a Tech-Intentional™ movement.

Copyright © 2024 The Screentime Consultant, LLC | All Rights Reserved. | Tech-Intentional™

and The Screentime Consultant, LLC™

are registered trademarks.

The Screentime Consultant Logo Footer image

Emily Cherkin’s mission is to empower parents to better understand and balance family screentime by building a Tech-Intentional™ movement.

Copyright © 2024 The Screentime Consultant, LLC | All Rights Reserved. | Tech-Intentional™

and The Screentime Consultant, LLC™ are registered trademarks.