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TV Time

Are you surprised that the American Academy of Pediatrics says no television before age two?  This standard alerts parents of infants, toddlers and preschoolers that their children are strongly affected by the talking tube and that they need to consider the way their children are exposed to its powerful influences.

  • If you chose to allow your children to view television, consider limiting the amount of “watching time” in their first three years to 30-90 minutes per day. This is more than enough for their young brains and eyes.  Children prefer, and benefit from, interacting with people far more.
  • The programming you chose should be specifically directed at the age of your child. Most good parenting magazines regularly publish guidelines that tend to be more objective and reliable than an advertiser’s suggestions.
  • Commercial-free is far better for eyes, ears, and minds.  Fewer interruptions and a generally higher level of intellectual and emotional content are the benefits.
  • A child’s room does not need a television. Television may inhibit a child’s desire to read and play imaginatively for years.
  • When your children watch television, watch with them.  They may need your help to decipher the barrage of messages, and only you know when they have had enough.  Occasional babysitting by means of television so you can get something done is understandable, but may be a waste of your child’s time and mind.

These guidelines should be discussed regularly by all adults in your household. The evening news may matter to the grown-ups, but it is frequently incomprehensible and somewhat frightening to your little ones. Media-literate parents are great blessings to their children.