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Thread: Using TV as a babysitter...period.

  1. #21
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    Jan 2006
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    Numbers 2, 3, and 4 are exactly why I DO use TV to "babysit" my kids from time to time.

    2. My kids are active and engaged with life on a daily basis. If they chill out in front of TV while I get a few things done or take a shower, the vast majority of their time is still spent in a positive way.

    3. Ah, because I get tired of trying to think of ways to keep the ball rolling all day! If they are sniping and arguing and whining at me, let the tube do the entertaining for a bit!

    4. Not sure how it's anti-child to need a break now and then. I sure don't feel bad about taking a breather from my kids. I can't be "on" 24/7 any more than the TV should be on 24/7, or that the kids should be in school 24/7 or at a friend's house 24/7. Sometimes I just need to break up the day a bit or have a moment to myself.

    JMO,
    Karen (mom to four ages 7 and under and home all day).



    Quote Originally Posted by freetibet
    1. even if there are no commercials, the whole show ends up being a commercial because all of the characters and settings are going to be merchandized regardless and I hate having kids being subjected to the incessant marketing. Surely they can wait till they are grown to try to give them useless things in exchange for their time and money...

    2. it's passive. Children need to be involved and engaged with life.

    3. it's 'entertainment'. Why do children need to be entertained?

    4. it's anti-child - similar to hand-held games, and anti-social. Here's a gameboy now be quiet and let me do whatever it is I want to do.

    that's enough for now.

  2. #22
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    I guess you'd have to define 'entertainment' to discuss why children need to be entertained.

    if people are trying to avoid interaction with children then I'd say they are anti-children. If they are trying to avoid general social situations then they are anti-social. Handing children gameboys at restaurants in order to 'keep them quiet' *is*, IMO, anti-child, otherwise people would actually engage with children.

  3. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by freetibet
    I guess you'd have to define 'entertainment' to discuss why children need to be entertained.

    if people are trying to avoid interaction with children then I'd say they are anti-children. If they are trying to avoid general social situations then they are anti-social. Handing children gameboys at restaurants in order to 'keep them quiet' *is*, IMO, anti-child, otherwise people would actually engage with children.
    Or simply teach them to sit quietly and listen, as we were taught and we teach our kids. There was a kid at the orthodontist the other day with a gameboy so he could manage his 5 minute wait. I think sitting quietly is a good skill for all kids to learn.....certainly by 9 or 10 (as this kid was) he should be able to do it without an electronic device in his hand. [Just my pet peeve of the day!]

  4. #24
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    and for me it comes full circle, the idea that children need to be constantly entertained in some fashion, and particularly with media like tv or computer games, prevents them from exercising imagination or having opportunities to be still and quiet because every minute is filled with things that are shiny and bright to keep their attention.

    In my opinion it's a real disservice to children (and families).

    When I was in the States last year, we went to dinner with some friends to a restaurant but because they had two TVs going (no sound) it was difficult to talk to the kids (10 and 13 yo) as there was some show on that they usually watch. We lost the opportunity to talk, to get to know each other a bit because of this.

    It seems that so many places have TVs now, in the malls (here) they have big screens with adverts on them or touch screens with multi-media advertising instead of store directories. And because they are, by design, intended to attract and keep people's attention - that's exactly what happens. People are sucked into them as they walk by.

  5. #25
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    Everything in moderation, IMO. My kids have a lot of downtime, quiet time, times when they just put on music and jump around or read a book or sit at the counter and ask me questions about this or that...my kids have the least extracurricular activities of most families I know. They are always outside running around and making up silly games or just zooming on their scooters. They have great imaginations.

    Just because I (and many parents) periodically "use" screen time to "entertain" my kids (but to me it's more about letting me have some time to either do something that needs to be done without interruption or I need a break and don't completely trust that they won't start fighting or bugging me for something) doesn't mean that their lives are filled with meaningless advertisements and a brain of oatmeal. I will admit that from time to time I think they've had more than their share of screen time. This is especially so in the winter months and during school breaks that fall during bad weather months. We all start to run out of ideas and enthusiasm.

    I also definitely do NOT consider myself anti-child because my children are in front of the TV at various points during the day. They get plenty of the good stuff the rest of the time. It's all about balance. In addition, to want a break from my kids and to want it so badly that I choose the TV to keep them occupied instead of trusting that they won't fight or come looking for me...I also consider that normal.



    [QUOTE=freetibet]and for me it comes full circle, the idea that children need to be constantly entertained in some fashion, and particularly with media like tv or computer games, prevents them from exercising imagination or having opportunities to be still and quiet because every minute is filled with things that are shiny and bright to keep their attention.

    In my opinion it's a real disservice to children (and families).

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