Tuesday, February 15, 2011


O.k. I have taken a bit of a break the past few days to enjoy my peace and quiet while Katie was at my parents house.
I figured I would do a quick blog post off of one of the suggestions you all gave me and I figured the TV one was a good one and a quick one that would get a discussion rolling quickly:)

No TV until 2.
We have all heard it and I honestly don't know anyone who has actually abided by that.

For me, I was excited to see how Katie would react to television shows for kids - so we started showing her Sesame Street. (I think that was the first show anyway)
It was interesting to see how she would only watch the Elmo's World Part and didn't stay interested in anything else at first.

Then slowly, she picked characters and segments that she liked ok and started watching those too.

As a Full time stay at home mom, I couldn't do certain basic things if it weren't for the tv. Call that a cop out if you want - but I get to shower, use the bathroom, make a meal or organize a closet thanks to those 20 minute shows she likes.

It's also the only time Katie will cuddle on the couch with us - so sometimes in the morning when we wake up - we all sit on the couch as a family and watch a show while Katie has her morning juice and we have our coffee.

Plus, we used to travel a lot in the car for at least 2 hours and we got portable DVD players/tvs for the car for one of our big trips to Maine which is a 6 hour drive - and we still use them if we are going to be in the car for over an hour.

Now, I will admit she was becoming a bit TV obsessed and asked for it a lot - but I have noticed that since we have re-organized our apartment and put her toys away - she doesn't ask for the tv as much.

Now... for the positive aspect of Katie watching tv. She learns from it. Especially a few months ago when her language was really bursting - we found that the characters and things she saw on the tv would translate well with her books and we could use them as language/talking/learning points. We even had this elmo dvd that came with flash cards that we could play with her while she watched it and use the flash cards on their own and she learned a TON of words from it.

So, I can see both sides of the argument and I think that every parent knows their kid best. I believe that some kids can't handle watching tv because they just completely zone in and tune the rest of the world out - and I can see the negative to that. However, I also think that used in moderation and used interactively, TV doesn't have to be as poisonous as some people claim.

Please comment away and remember - we are all parents here and deserve respect from each other - so no judgement - just personal experience and ideas:)


  1. I'm totally a TV mom, I admit it... My girls watch more than the recommended amount, but they're fine if we have a day without it, as well. We recently got rid of cable, since the girls were really the only ones using it, and it's been great. There's not much on for them after 5pm so we spend more time hanging out together. And then when there is a show we can all watch (or we rent a movie), it seems extra special. I can't really think of any negatives that have come from watching TV for my kids, but I do have some friends that have had to outlaw some shows in particular (ie Spongebob, icarly, etc) for encouraging bad behavior. Luckily, it hasn't been a problem for my girls--or I don't know when I'd shower, either! LOL

  2. My personal thought on TV has always been that it is entertainment. There is nothing wrong with watching a little tv (Jake certainly has many shows he will ask to watch) but it definitely does not take the place of learning by playing with hands on toys or conversation.

    I think a lot of people see shows that promote learning and think they can plop their kid in front of the tv all afternoon and think it's good for them because they are learning - and I just happen to disagree with that. That being said, I agree with you that when they have these bursts in putting words and sentences together certain things they would see on TV would pull more words out of them (but so would car rides and walking around places).

    I feel like I'm very old fashioned when it comes to technology and kids, and I'm trying to navigate what is helpful and what is hurtful.

    My feeling against all of this technology is that when kids get into school, they should know how to count without a calculator or memorize things without having to sing repetetive songs.

    All kids learn differently, but I see the merit in teaching young kids the basics first and then going off from there.

  3. I would love to know how it's possible to abide by the "no TV until 2" rule. If I didn't have Barney or Sesame Street or Nick Jr. when my kids were little, I wouldn't have been able to remain a sane person.

  4. OK we are a tv family. It's on all the time, even when we aren't actually watching it. I am amazed that JC can be in his playroom and not even near the tv but knows when you have turned the channel from his show. With that said I always try to have educational shows or movies playing just because I know he is listening- they are sponges. He does know that there are certain times when the tv gets turned off, such as dinner or when we are doing arts and crafts. As a working mom I am guilty of using the tv as not only a babysitter but also for learning. After walking in the door from work and needed to get dinner cooked I don't always have time to sit down and teach my child something educational. So I know I am not getting the mother of the year award but I also know that watching My Baby Can Read and Baby Einstein have done a great job of doing what I don't always have the time to do.

    - Christine Bouchard

  5. I don't see a problem with the TV, my kids tend to get bored with it after awhile anyway and play or leave the room. Everything in moderation...

  6. I LOVE tv. I grew up with the tv on all the time. I fall asleep to the tv. My Tivo is running probably 12 hours a day. My kids also love their shows, but I make sure they are age appropriate (Nick Jr. and PBS Kids are big in my house) and it is rare that they are actually sitting down and just watching tv. It is absolutely possible (and probably true) that they watch too much tv, but I enjoy showering by myself, going to the bathroom by myself and getting dressed all by myself and if Mom's not happy, no one is!