How To Tame Your Child’s TV
If you are like many parents and caregivers, you may be at your wits end trying to figure out how to tame your child’s TV viewing. While it’s tempting to cut out all television, you can help your child to moderate the types of television that they watch and for how long. After all, there are numerous advantages to moderate TV viewing.
Some of the benefits of TV when children watch age appropriate, educational TV, in moderation:
1. The ability to learn about new things and places through educational programming
2. Becoming aware of the daily lives of people from different cultures around the world and in turn becoming more empathetic towards others
3. Being inspired to read the books upon which popular programs are based
4. A larger, more diverse vocabulary
5. Increased socialisation and a feeling of belonging to a community with one’s peers
6. Increased incidents of modelling good behaviour when positive, educational programming is viewed
With all of these benefits, your children might be placed at an academic and social disadvantage if you cut out TV completely. Several studies show that it is the type of programming, and the length of time that children spend in front of TV, that have the biggest influence on their behaviour and ability.
Steps to tame your child’s TV habits:
1. Choose the right types of programs for your child to watch. When selecting a TV program for your child ask yourself the following questions:
a. Does this program help my child learn a new skill or improve an existing one? Educational programs that focus on academic skills such as reading, counting, shapes, colours and even memory skills are great choices.
b. Does this program stimulate my child’s creativity and imagination?
c. How are people from different races and backgrounds portrayed in the program?
d. How is conflict handled? Does the program avoid violence and encourage dialogue and tolerance to find solutions?
e. What is the show’s rating? Does it avoid violence, sexual innuendo and offensive language?
f. Is the show age appropriate? Are the themes in the show something your child can connect with and easily understand?
g. Does the show provide good role models so that my child has good examples and behaviour to model?
2. Limit the amount of time that your child spends watching TV or interacting with other forms of electronic entertainment and toys. While it’s tempting to let the TV babysit your children, especially as busy as our modern lifestyles are, it is important that they engage in other forms of active, free play throughout their day.
Toys and other educational aids are also an important part of helping your child to learn while they play. At MooWoo, we have a full line of toys that will encourage your child to observe, experiment, imagine, share and have fun while they learn.
By choosing TV programs that are educational, and limiting the amount of time that your child spends in front of the TV each day, you can ensure that their TV viewing is beneficial to them, rather than a harmful experience.