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To think kids watching tv is a bit of a waste of their life?

(317 Posts)
Amykins35 Sun 21-Apr-13 13:14:28

My daughter is 5 and her father and I are separated. When she has contact, she usually watches at least 5 films over the course of a weekend. On the other hand, here we used to go to the cinema on some of my weekends before her baby sister was born and that was the only thing she watched. We didn't even have a TV at home until 4 months ago. In the winter we had a film night on my Fridays where we baked cakes then snuggled on the sofa with teddies to watch a film and eat our cakes. But now the weather is finally brightening up we'll be going to the park/walking the dog/playing in the garden on those Fridays and so she probably won't watch anything here til next winter.
I read a few weeks ago that kids in the UK watch an average of 3 hours tv per day and that makes me sad as I really do think its a waste of their lives. Also, I don't understand where people find time for their kids to watch tv - my daughter goes to bed much later than her friends but we still run out of time to do everything she/we wanted to do. A typical day is:
7.30: she wakes up and gets ready while playing with DD2
7.45: breakfast
8.00: leave to walk/scoot/bike 2 miles to school

After school:
I usually drive to collect her so we can pop home for a snack before after school activities which usually finish at 6. She then plays/draws/reads while I cook tea, tea usually finished by 7 when we walk the dog, back home for homework, bath, stories and bed usually around 8.45.

There just isn't time in the day for tv and I don't understand where people find the time for it. If DD isn't doing an activity she likes to trampoline/paint/have tea parties etc after school and I think the amount of TV she watches at her fathers is a waste of his contact time. Before I get flamed and told my DD needs to rest and relax which may be why she watches TV at her dads - drawing and listening to stories are relaxing too. My DD never asks to watch TV here even if worn out - which is very rare indeed! AIBU to think watching TV is a bit of a waste of children's lives when there are so many more fun things they could be doing?

TV is my best friend and babysitter so YABU

ObiWankenYoni Sun 21-Apr-13 13:18:52

Without Mr Tumble, I would not cope.

Bunbaker Sun 21-Apr-13 13:20:04

Smug

Fakebook Sun 21-Apr-13 13:20:14

<applauds> You're doing a splendid job with her. But so are parents who do find time for their children to watch tv. Everyone has their own parenting style. I don't think it's a waste, and it shouldn't bother you what other people decide to do.

Amykins35 Sun 21-Apr-13 13:21:13

Why is it smug to disagree with kids watching TV?

Fairylea Sun 21-Apr-13 13:22:08

I have the tv on all day everyday. Ds is 10months old and lights up when mr bloom comes on tv and jigs about to all the tunes. Dd aged 10 has grown up like this and is top of her class and very social.

We also go out a lot and do lots of other things. It's all about balance !

theodorakisses Sun 21-Apr-13 13:22:40

In our house there is usually a tv on somewhere, radio four on 24/7, kids in and out, crisps and pizza not banned and dogs and cats everywhere.
I cannot think of anything more dull than a house with no sounds except the sound of enforced "activities".
Still, nice opportunity for a stealth boast thread OP.

SkinnybitchWannabe Sun 21-Apr-13 13:23:19

My dc watch tv whenever they want and they haven't grown 2 heads.
I can kind of see your point about her only watching tv at her dads instead of doing activities.

Amykins35 Sun 21-Apr-13 13:23:20

TV on all day everyday is hardly balanced!

infamouspoo Sun 21-Apr-13 13:23:23

TV is fab and educational

noisytoys Sun 21-Apr-13 13:23:29

I usually turn cbeebies off when it starts looping and repeating itself. Not that DDs do nothing but watch TV, but it's usually on in the background

StealthOfficialCrispTester Sun 21-Apr-13 13:25:13

OP I don't like that my DC watch TV and applaud what you're doing, but there is a happy medium.
What happens at the weekend? Do you never just need to get something done and find that she needs you? At the moment mine are creating chaos upstairs and I am MNing clearing out our spare room. But sometimes it's just mummy, mummy, mummy and I never get a second of "not needed" tmie

Amykins My TV is on all day while we are in the house. Doesn't mean he sits glued to it. It is possible for children to play and ignore the TV or paly while they watch. I'm teaching him multitasking

ChocsAwayInMyGob Sun 21-Apr-13 13:25:32

Isn't 8.45pm a little late for a 5 year old to go to bed?

I'm amazed you can get her from waking up to out of the door in 30 mins flat too!

I watched TV as a child and I have fond memories of being excited about my favourite programmes. If you and your child are fine without it, good for you. It doesn't mean that households that watch more TV than you are wasting their children's lives in any way.

And yes, you do sound a bit smug. It may be your faux bafflement at the fact that others do things differently.

everlong Sun 21-Apr-13 13:25:35

It's finding the balance. They need to switch off from school, they need their brains stimulated, they need to enjoy their spare time.

Tv does have a roll in this.

Amykins35 Sun 21-Apr-13 13:25:53

They aren't enforced activities! I'll ask her what she wants to do and she'll say draw/paint/trampoline/ play with chickens/dog/guinea pig/baby and i will help her if necessary

I only wish dd would take an interest in the tv instead of needing to be constantly entertained grin

My ds used to love programmes like Mr Tumble when he was younger. It can teach them new things, show them different nationalities, disabilities etc that they might not normally run into in their own world.

StealthOfficialCrispTester Sun 21-Apr-13 13:26:09

I have a friend whose DC watch very little TV, and wish I could be like that grin

theodorakisses Sun 21-Apr-13 13:26:16

I don't think anyone really watches it, we have an outside pool and a beach and sailing club up the road with things going on. If people want to go, they go, if they want to watch tv they watch tv. I don't depend on my kids for company.

Pozzled Sun 21-Apr-13 13:26:29

Yabu. I don't think it's time wasted; my DDs learn a lot from cbeebies. As with anything, the key is balance.

lucamom Sun 21-Apr-13 13:27:16

5 films strikes me as excessive over a weekend, but since having children I've modified my 'tv is evil' stance.

Like most things, I believe it's ok (sometimes necessary) in moderation, but the key thing is what they're watching. Until recently mine were strictly only cbeebies, and have learnt heaps from nina & the neurons/mr tumble/get well soon etc. however, now the boys are 6 and 4 I've allowed the odd episode of Ben 10/star wars, and I can see an immediate change in their behaviour (only slight, but after watching these types of programmes they become more aggressive-noticeable because they aren't typical rough and tumble boys-and even a bit Ruder/cheekier).

We compromise with Disney channel but looking for non fighting/American stuff that's not babyish!

StealthOfficialCrispTester Sun 21-Apr-13 13:28:13

Chocs I thought that but her DD does get up very late too

LadyBeagleEyes Sun 21-Apr-13 13:28:27

Sorry, Op but i agree with others.
You are very smug.

I'd never get to mumsnet without tv!

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