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What is an appropriate time limit for video games?

I am one of the moms that does allow video games in the house. My 11 year old son does well in school, plays sports, is active outside so I allow games. We are trying to set some guidelines but I dont have anything to compare to. Either moms allow it as a babysitter (no limit) or don't allow it at all. My plan is to give him a weekly video allowance and he needs to plan accordingly and responsibly. Any ideas or tips?

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Asked by thesocialdiva at 6:29 PM on Feb. 8, 2009 in Tweens (9-12)

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Answers (9)
  • I'd say as long as everything is going well and he's active in other ways maybe a couple hours or so a day. That could be adjusted as needed if grades slip or for disciplinary reasons.


    Answer by BlessedMommy64 at 7:16 PM on Feb. 8, 2009

  • You could do an hour on school nights and 2 on weekends as long as his homework/what needs to be done is done. Or somerthing along those lines.

    Answer by kayceebug8741 at 8:08 PM on Feb. 8, 2009

  • I say ten minute per age (110 minutes max per day)

    Answer by admckenzie at 10:44 PM on Feb. 8, 2009

  • Do NOT let him ever play "WOW" World of Warcraft! It's an online game that is so good- it destroys the lives of the people who play it- cuz they can't stop playing. He may not know about it yet- but he will one day ask you if he can join- SAY NO>

    My 16 year old son was lost to that game for MONTHS!!! played it till 4am every night- behind closed doors. He could't stop on his own. We finally had to take his computer away!

    My girls classmate's step dad is lost in the game- plays it 24/7. Ruining their life. The son/classmate - age 11- spends 7 hours a night on the game as well. Now the mom started playing!


    Answer by Anonymous at 12:30 AM on Feb. 9, 2009

  • Hindsight- I'd advise allowing games on weekends only- No more than 5 hours a day on weekends. (5 hours is nothing actually)

    Otherwise- make it something allowed from time homework and chores are done until dinner is served. No more than 2 hours a night.

    Time flies when they are playing games. My son wanted 5 hours a night- thought that was too few. Ended up playing games average 9 hours a night. Yes NINE. From 4-7- hours for dinner and shower then 9-2am. He did this from age 13- 16/now when we took the computer/games away (xbox 360, playstation 2) He paid for all his own games- Started betting on cardgames played with his friends in school to make extra cash to buy more games.(we didn't know) Grew tired of earning money from us the slow way.

    Games are fun. Too much fun. It's a lot to expect a kid to have self control. I thought my son was
    mature, responsible. He was doing good in school- so we thought. But he lied.

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:41 AM on Feb. 9, 2009

  • In our house we have what we call Campbell Cash. It's little pieces of paper that we reward our kids for doing their chores. On these slips of paper they say worth 15 mins. of video game time or TV time. They can earn up to 10 hrs a week worth of these if they do all their chores. They have to choose when to spend them and how much to spend. They can earn more for rewards for certain things like good grades, or doing something extra without being told. But they can also lose them too if they are bad. We do limit that you can't cash in more than 2 hrs on a school night (usually they only use half an hr to an hr). But it's kind of cute b/c my oldest son will plan his whole week out using them. Yesterday I asked him if he wanted to play a video game but he said he didn't b/c he was saving his Campbell Cash for a movie thon on Saturday.

    Answer by Juggalette0327 at 1:42 AM on Feb. 9, 2009

  • In our home the golden rule for games are 10 to 10. NO games before 10 am and No games after 10pm. 1 hr during the school nights and 2 on the weekends. If I catch them not following the rules I take their controllers. They also know that the games they play are just that games. What they do on the games they are NOT to go out and do. I cant believe the graphics on some of them... We have a family night for guitar hero. That makes things fun.

    Answer by TwinBoyzMom2U at 1:59 AM on Feb. 9, 2009

  • WOW is very addicting. My son, of his own accord, chose to take that off the computer as it was all he could think about even when he wasn't playing. It is like cigarettes. He still sometimes wants to play and it has been two years. The Lord of the Rings game and Runescape online are also addicting.
    We have a no video game rule during school 10-2 (homeschool). They also have chores and educational tv. There really isn't a lot of time left over. Maybe an hour a day.

    Answer by SusieD250 at 11:50 AM on Feb. 9, 2009

  • Well, whatever you try, remember you always have the right to amend it if it doesn't seem to be working out!

    Answer by BJoan at 12:40 PM on Feb. 14, 2009

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