Sunday, January 11, 2009

TV or no TV?That is the question

As a mother of a preschooler & toddler, I keep reading books & articles on how to encourage learning in young children.I encourage outdoor play & explorations with sand & water.I read to them almost everyday and take them to the library once a week (I started reading to them rather late,when they were around 2,but they still seem to like books).However, one medium which continues to baffle me is television.

From what I have read about children & television, I really cannot make out whether TV is good or bad for children.From time to time I,like most other parents, have used the TV as the "electronic babysitter" even though I keep reading horror stories about how TV can cause attention deficit disorders and how some children really get addicted to it & watch 6-7 hours of TV! I actually panicked a bit when I read that the American Academy of Pediatrics recommend that children under 2 not be allowed to watch any TV because I used to keep my younger child in a bouncer in front of the TV when he became mobile whenever I needed to get something done! I used to do it occasionally and not more than thirty minutes....but I still felt a bit sick in my stomach & wished that I had known this before!

I can understand that too much of TV is bad for children because it keeps them from doing more productive activities like playing & jumping around.But what about TV in small doses? (like one hour a day). All the parents out there with different kinds of experiences & ideas ......let's have a discussion on this.


Neelum said...

I am also in the same wagon of giving in to the demand for TV, knowing the ill-effects, and then I feel that the shows are quite informative and it's OK if they watch. I do have a rule for how much he can watch, I used to allow him an hour everyday; and once the rules were in place and we followed through every day he would look forward to his time, and best part was not disturb me during my tv-time. But now this rule is relaxed or actually non-existing!! I too feel awful, and am actually thinking of scrapping of the cartoon channels from the list, but then again I feel it is an issue of my control, and so I must re-learn to set the rules and follow through. So now that's what I will do starting now. And yes Malina, Nazu and Iba hardly watch any TV as compared to Aaditya, also remember that he loves watching movies that is also TV time right?? Don't fret too much, set a time frame, and keep to it. It is tough in the beginning but kids learn to settle down with it.

Malina said...

Yeah, setting a time limit and then sticking to it seems to help.However,problem arises when daddy dear allows the kids to watch unlimited amounts of TV during weekends & then they demand the same during weekdays!

Neelum said...

ahh it's the same daddy-story in my house also !! i think we should pack off the daddies to some activities during the weekends...or best is that the entire family just heads out, no one stays at home. so that way no tv and no daddy spoiling the kids !! howzatt??

Malina said...

Yes,that's a good idea.The whole family can stay off TV without any effort.And children really seem to love these family outings!