(FOX 2) - It's pretty much inevitable - once school starts, homework follows.
Here's the problem, when trying to study and absorb knowledge, that cell phone can really get in the way.
“If you are trying to study, trying to do homework and you read a sentence, read two sentences, and then turn your head, check and see who texted you - it goes buzz buzz buzz buzz - you're going back and forth between the buzzes and texting your friends and studying - your brain doesn't really process properly what you just read.” said Dr. Daniel Schnaar, of Beaumont Children’s Hospital. “You think it does, but it doesn't really connect one thought to the next thought and so that you can really contemplate it, think about it, and then your brain gets it."
That's where the 45-15 Rule could come in handy.
Dr. Schnaar admits he struggled to set limits with his own teens, which is why he came up with a simple method for the rest of us. You tell the student that while they're studying, no phone is allowed at all for 45 minutes, then you get it back for 15 minutes.
“A 45-minute time to focus on their studies, try to get their homework done - and they know they have 15 minutes that they don't have to worry about school, they can text their friends as fast as they can, and then they have to go back for another 45,” said Schnaar.
And these screens aren't just problems when it comes to schoolwork. When children mix screen time with sleep time, it's a bad combination.
Dr. Schnaar just had a teen patient admit he sneaks in video games until the morning hours.
"He stays up until 3 in the morning, and then when it comes to be school time he's not really able to pay good attention and there's no way he can really do well, and then the poor kid is exhausted and sleeps every day after school. I think that's a red flag that parents should look for."
Let's tackle the sleep issue now. If you can't get your kid to go to bed earlier, here's a trick - start waking them up earlier. Also ask that they turn in their screens to a central location, like the kitchen, for the night. That way they go to bed tired and unplugged, which is the goal.