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280

Firstly, I have to admit that while reading your question I was wondering if you're being serious. For me (as a hopeful future father with the same questions in mind), your solutions sound shocking and I would certainly advise against them. To reflect on some points... 1) "no TV ever, no movies, no pop music, no magazines" Does this also mean no friends? ...


56

My opinion and experience is that television provides much more disruption than benefit: My experience is that if the television is on, then everybody is "glued to the screen" or at least thoroughly distracted. This prevents social interaction, and it also prevents you from really appreciating the food you're eating -- potentially leading to eating ...


52

Wow! Well, it sounds as though you want to be the perfect family, and the perfect parents. And it's easy to understand why. Who wouldn't want the best of everything for their children? I have a couple of general comments, I hope you'll find them useful. Oh and before I forget, congratulations on your soon-to-arrive new addition to the family! :) So... ...


46

We homeschool our kids, so perhaps I can provide a unique perspective. A lot of the other answers seem to be primarily worried about friends. People sparked friendships for millenia before television and public education, and they can do so today. It's hard to see when your own childhood friendships formed at school over common pop culture interests, but ...


35

While I think your intentions are good, I think that some of what you are doing will actually have negative effects. Dolls are a perfectly healthy toy - both my son and my daughters played with them. They also all played with toy shops, aeroplanes, racing cars, horses etc. My point is: they are toys. Whether they have any gender affiliation in your family ...


27

You lack one key: To be wonderful, to be amazing, to be successful, she must not be locked in this overwhelming strategy. Sadly, you are contributing to "this sexist world". It seems the motivation behind her future micro-managed life is that she is female, and as such will require much more "equipment" in order to survive. This is false. Your daughter ...


26

There is sufficient reason, imo, to be concerned. Research findings to date might suggest a correlation between television viewing and developmental problems, but they cannot show causality. Enough, in fact, that the American Academy of Pediatrics has issued a policy statement suggesting that children 2 and older be restricted to no more than 1 to 2 hours ...


23

According to the AAP not until two. In fact, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that children under two years of age avoid watching TV entirely. Experts say that babies and young toddlers see television as a confusing array of colors, images and noises. Children under age two won’t understand much of the content they see ...


23

This sounds totally inappropriate and a major warning flag. Both my children have been through numerous childcare centres/kindergartens/ELCs and none of them even had a television. The American Academy of Pediatrics have "that parents should limit the amount of time their infants and toddlers spend in front of any sort of screen and reaffirmed earlier ...


22

In summary, research findings to date might suggest a correlation between television viewing and developmental problems, but they cannot show causality. There is no evidence that television, even educational programming, has any positive effect on children younger than 2 years old. In fact, some studies suggest it may be harmful. According to the above ...


20

A 14 month old will have a short attention span - letting him watch the TV might seem like a pain free solution, but it generally is considered to actually make things worse. What you should do is plan for a lot of engaging activities - almost simultaneously. For example sitting with him on the floor surrounded by a range of different toys which do ...


18

Ask him to write you a list of: things that he likes doing things he would like to do someday things he has seen on television that he would like to learn more about things he would like to do with you alone things he would like to do with his other parent and/or siblings Then see what you can do to help get him the information, tools, and time to do ...


18

My daughter is about to turn 11, and I have similar hopes for her. Each of the paragraphs below is a category that her father and I have found to be influences on her in some way, and ways we try to approach them. Provide positive examples. This needs to be both men and women, of course: women who embody the values and confidence you hope for her to have, ...


16

Beofett's answer is excellent, but I would like to add a few personal observations which were too long for a comment. Youtube, specifically, can be very hard to control. Our toddler (3.5 years) does get to watch stuff there, but you have to be vigilant. Examples: Looking at toys helicopters, easily browsed to real helicopters, then to some wartime ...


15

Why do you assume that TV is a given? My wife & I don't own one (well, except for the retro TV I use as a monitor for my Atari 2600). When we were growing up, neither of us had a TV in the home until we were older than 10. My suggestion would be to junk your TV, & see how you get along without it. Bored? Learn to play an instrument, read a book, ...


14

This is perfectly normal and nothing to worry about. Kids that age often like to watch the same movies, read the same books, or play the same games over and over. Part of it is them controlling their environment, and some of it is the fact that they really like those movies, books, games, etc. I'd advise against trying too hard to change that, if you push ...


13

Consider your premise for a moment; you are claiming that it is desirable for your children to seek social approval from people who engage in activity you consider mindless and bad. I would change your focus slightly. Teach children that it's okay to be left out of things and that they don't need another's approval to engage in or abstain from an activity. ...


13

While I definitely agree professional help would be valuable, I would also suggest considering your opportunity to be a role-model to your brother. Spend time with him. Invite him to go with you to do fun things that don't involve the computer. Engage him in loving brotherly conversation, so that he trusts you and becomes more open to share what is going on ...


13

We addressed the "addiction" part of your question previously, but I wanted to talk about the behavior part. First, you shouldn't expect it to be as easy for your five year-old as it is for your nine year-old. Nine year-olds live a lot less "in the moment" compared to five year-olds, have developed more interests, and have learned more coping strategies ...


13

Good observations. I see things in sort of the opposite way, so let's compare. I feel that commercials are the evil twin of TV entertainment, especially when they're aimed at kids, especially when they appear between kids' shows. I don't want to indoctrinate consumerism into my kids' heads; there's plenty of opportunity elsewhere. That's one reason why I ...


13

I think you're overthinking this a bit. It's great for brainstorming, but don't let little things like whether or not she gets to play with dolls distract you from your primary laudable goal of raising an amazing daughter. For instance, why wouldn't an intelligent and happy child be able to enjoy and possibly even benefit from a bit of TV? What's so ...


12

For a professional, dedicated daycare, it is absolutely inappropriate. For in-home daycares, though, it may be difficult to avoid. As Dave mentioned in his answer, the clear recommendation is that there should be no television exposure before the age of two, and after that the amount of television exposure, if any, should be heavily restricted. ...


12

Small kids can't process passive media such as TV very well. They get overloaded easily because unless the show is going slowly, their mental processing simply can't keep up with the pace of the show. Because of this, they should be gently exposed to media. In practical terms, that means they'll benefit more from watching the same episode over and over ...


11

LEGO! There never was any cooler toy :-) It comes in so many varieties that there's something for him regardless if he fancies technics, cartoon robots, pirates, movie heroes, whatever. Plus, if your son insists on computer interaction, then go with LEGO Mindstorm (which lets him build a machine that must be programmed on the computer before it will run). ...


11

NOVA Nature Magic School Bus Mythbusters Anything else educational and promotes learning My son and I watch many of the documentaries that are on Netflix instant. There are many sites online where you can watch documentaries for free. Kids do not need to fill their heads with junk. They need to be built up to learn to respect the knowledge that will help ...


11

On the other hand ... I was making my living as a freelance graphic designer when my children were small (way pre-iPad), and was constantly reading warnings against letting children spend too much time on the computer. I read to them a great deal, and did other activities with them as a "stay-at-home mom." But since I was actually making my living at home, a ...


10

I'm aware that TV should be avoided at all, if possible. You're totally right. The best answer is: None. Just do it-- you won't be sorry. Also, support Screen Free Week this week. We don't have a TV by choice. During meal prep my kids draw a picture read a story help with dinner set the table sing a song play a game make a pretend dinner etc It ...


10

We have a no TV rule during meals when we gather. It is not the only rule around meal gatherings. Proper clothing is required; no bathing suits or dirty clothes allowed. Good manners are expected, including participation in the prayers and conversation. Every one stays at the table until everyone is done. No handheld games or electronic devices, including ...


9

In the UK there is a programme on the BBC called Newsround, it has been going for decades, which is news specifically aimed and edited for children. While it can be a little too focused on human interest stories and cuddly animals, it does also try to offer a simplified version of the news. This would be a great sort of introduction - not just the ...


9

I think you should teach your child when to say they are uncomfortable with something. This is an important thing for them to learn. It means that they can decide for themselves in borderline cases when you have already decided they can watch, but they are not enjoying it. I have the same experience with my son who likes watching animated movies, but will ...



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