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10 Ways to Get Your Child To Put Their Cell Phone Down

Has your child’s cell phone become an extension of her hand? Between talking, texting, tweeting, taking pictures, sending emails, and playing games, kids have access to an endless amount of entertainment with their cell phones. This can get exceedingly frustrating for parents who rarely see more than the top of their children’s heads. Concerned parents are finding it more and more difficult to get their kids to pay attention to anything besides their phones.

For those who are encountering resistance, here are 10 ways to get your child to put down her cell phone.


  • Go to a movie – Cell phone use in movie theaters is severely frowned upon, so offer to take your child to a movie of their choice, but only if they hand over the phone first. This way the kid gets to watch a good movie and not annoy the other patrons.
  • Other activities – Get your kids involved in other activities that force them to put down the phone. Sewing, painting or playing a musical instrument are some examples of things to get children involved with where they can use their hands in other ways. You can’t play the flute and text at the same time.
  • Sports – Another way to get the cell phone out of kids’ hands is to get them involved in sports. Coaches are not going to allow kids to take their phones with them on the field and play. Children in sports will be forced to put the phone down and get some exercise.
  • Lay down the law – If none of these ideas work, you may just have to lay down the law. You’re the parent and you make the rules, so establish some guidelines and enforce them. For instance, make a rule that there will be no cell phones at the dinner table. Have a basket on the counter where all phones are placed during dinner.

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Zakat eligibility of The FYI

The Family & Youth Institute, or The FYI, is a well-known Muslim organization in the United States. It works to promote mental health and wellness by strengthening and empowering individuals, families, and communities through research and education. It has been working for many years to bring Islamic perspectives to understanding and promoting mental health in our communities.

It is dedicated to serving and supporting Muslims – safeguarding our deen, our families, and our future generations. Therefore, the work of The FYI comes in the category of ‘fi sabeelillah’ or the Path of Allah, within the eight categories where Zakat money can be used.

Zakah expenditures are only for the poor and for the needy and for those employed for it and for bringing hearts together [for Islam] and for freeing captives [or slaves] and for those in debt and for the cause of Allah, and for the [stranded] traveler – an obligation [imposed] by Allah, And Allah, is Knowing and Wise.”
(Al-Tawbah 9:60)

According to scholars who widen the meaning of fee sabeelillah to include any activities that promote Islamic growth, The FYI is indeed eligible to receive part of the Zakat funds for its programs and services. I urge Muslims in America to support this organization through their donations, general charity, and through their Zakat. I ask Allah swt to strengthen and guide The FYI to continue its good work in supporting Muslims.

Shaikh Ali Suleiman Ali, PhD

About Shaikh Ali

Sh. Ali Suleiman Ali was born in Ghana where he spent his childhood studying with various Muslim scholars. He then moved to Saudi Arabia and enrolled in the Islamic University of Madina.  He graduated with a degree in both Arabic and Islamic Studies. Dr. Ali went on to complete his Ph.D. in Islamic Studies at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.

Sh. Ali serves on the Advisory Council of The Family & Youth Institute. He is the Senior Imam and Director of the Muslim Community of Western Suburbs in Canton, Michigan. Additionally, he serves as the Director of Muslim Family Services in Detroit and is a council member of the Fiqh Council of North America (FCNA). He is also a member of the North American Imams Federation (NAIF) and the Association of Muslim Jurists of America (AMJA).