Engaging with your child – being on the phone!

Mobile phones are great for communicating with friends and finding out information quickly but they can also have a detrimental impact on family relations. Far too many people are so obsessed with their digital devices, that they spend more time talking on them or texting, than actually engaging with their children.

Spend less time on the phone and more time engaging with your child.

phone in hand

Image source: flickr.com


Lack of engagement can lead to behavioural problems

If you are talking on the phone constantly whilst taking your little one out on a stroll or if you are sat at the table texting whilst they eat, you may as well not really be there at all. Paying too much attention to your phone and not enough to your child can cause behavioural problems and even impact their ability to develop communication and social skills.

Being on the phone all of the time will deprive your toddler of contact with you. This can end up making them feel unloved, unheard and unwanted. One on one contact is essential to their well being, so put down the phone and makes a conscious effort to engage with your child.


They will pick up bad habits from you

Spending all of your time on your mobile phone will also teach your child bad habits. They will assume that it’s the natural thing to do and will therefore begin to ignore people who are talking to them and grow up thinking it is okay to text at the dinner table or take phone calls in the middle of conversations.

These are problems you don’t want your child to have and habits you won’t want them to pick up. As a parent it’s your job to ensure you nurture your child and provide them with the best possible life and that involves putting down the phone and engaging with them both physically and verbally.


Why engaging with your child is so important

Just like with adults, communication and engagement is vital to a child’s well being. If they are not spoken to, they will not feel cared for and this can cause a number of behavioural problems both at home and at nursery or school. Here we’ve shared some of the reasons why engaging with your child is so important.


Improving their verbal skills

Speaking to your toddler regularly will help to improve their verbal and communication skills. It will also allow them to pick up new words and add them to their vocabulary. The more you talk and engage with your children, the easier they will find it to communicate with other people in other environments, such as at nursery or school.

Father playing with child

Image source: flickr.com

Engaging with your child will help to improve their communication and verbal skills.


Helping them express emotion

Engaging with your child will help them learn how to express how they are feeling with words. This can prevent them lashing out through frustration and having other behavioural problems. Children need to be able to match their emotions to words, so they can express them to adults and get the help they need.

Understanding them better

You may already think you know everything about your child but chances are, if you don’t talk to them properly, you won’t. Talking to your child will give them the opportunity to share information with you, such as their hopes, dreams and anything that is worrying them.

Although you may lead a very busy life, it’s important to take time out to speak with your child and show them how much you value them.



As you can see, being on the phone all of the time can have a negative effect on your child’s well being and potentially lead to underdeveloped communication skills and attention-seeking behavioural problems. The easy way to prevent this from happening is to pay less attention to your phone and more to your little one. Engage with your child and you will not only teach them important communication skills but also ensure they lead a happy and healthy life.

Image Credits: William Hook and caiteesmith photography