The Children’s Book Review | June 24, 2019
Written by Robert F. Myers, PhD
Age Range: Adults
Publisher: Parenting Today LLC (2019)
What to Expect: Advice on how to manage and limit family screen time
As the amount of innovative digital content increases, the volume of research suggesting that screen time is harmful to families, young people, and relationships has also increased exponentially. It can be difficult for parents to know how to curb the relentless pressure to “go digital”. In The Well-Balanced Family, Myers offers advice on how to limit screen time without compromising family time and, importantly, without incurring resentment and hostility. Myers’ advice is family rather than child-focused; he makes the insightful point that “you can’t treat the child without also working with the family unit”. What makes this volume so valuable is that the suggestions—which are grounded in comprehensive research— are accessible and written in everyday language. The author has meticulously researched the problems associated with screen time, and the efficacy of the recommendations he presents. This wealth of academic detail is condensed into easy-to-understand principles, allowing parents to know that in following his advice they are supported by the consensus of experts in the field.
The book lays out the research supporting the need to limit screen time, and then moves on to practical suggestions on everything from alternative activities to cyber- safety, each divided neatly into individual chapters and grouped under headings that make it easy to skip to the relevant section as needed. There are also extremely useful features that make this volume an accessible tool for whole-family use. In the preface, Myers offers a step-by-step guide for using the book—not just for reading it, but also for transforming its guidance into real-life family practices. Within chapters, specific activities or instructions are presented in bold font, making them easy to scan for. Chapters also include useful summaries of key ideas, and suggestions for further reading and resources.
Overall, this volume is invaluable for readers who want to limit their family’s screen time because of its sound and practical advice.
About the Author
Robert Myers, PhD is a child psychologist with over 35 years of clinical experience. He is Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior at the UC Irvine School of Medicine. Dr Myers also provides parent education through public speaking and media appearances. He is the founder of a popular website for parents, Child Development Institute at www.childdevelopmentinfo.com. Robert Myers lives in Orange, CA with his wife, Pam. They were married in 1971 and have two adult children. He likes to listen to music and go to concerts, travel to new places, photography, and go hiking in the local mountains. Most of all he likes to spend time with his family, especially playing board games and having fun.
Dedicated Reviews allow authors and illustrators to gain prompt visibility for their work. This non-biased review of “The Well-Balanced Family: Reduce Screen Time and Increase Family Fun, Fitness and Connectedness” was sponsored* by Robert Myers, PhD. Learn more about getting a book review …