Advanced search

What's for lunch today? Take inspiration from Mumsnetters' tried-and-tested recipes in our Top Bananas! cookbook - now under £10

Find out more

How much TV do your DC watch?

(9 Posts)
onceipopicantstop Tue 26-Mar-13 20:16:54

I'm a bit worried that I'm asking for criticism with this post! But I'd be interested to know how much TV your kids watch. Before I had DS (age 3) I was determined that he would watch very little TV - ha ha!! So at the moment I reckon he watches 3-4 hours a day blush. He's an early riser - up around 530 - and tbh I'm like the walking dead at that time in the morning so sticking a DVD on is just an easy way of entertaining him. But he probably watches TV for 2 hours in the morning, then another 30 mins - 1 hour at lunchtime, and 1 hour before bed. I'm a SAHM with DH working long hours so its just me and DS for 12 hours a day. I love being at home with him but it's hard keeping him entertained all day and the TV is my fallback option!! But i am concerned by the stuff in the press about TV affecting behaviour etc.

sweetieaddict Tue 26-Mar-13 22:47:06

Well, 3-4 hours of tv a day is a lot, there's no getting around that and personally I think too much for a 3 year old (others may disagree though).

The key thing from your post is to change the routine if possible, don't allow him to get up at 5.30am - put him down later and try and get him in a 7-7 routine or if he does wake up at 5.30 he needs to play with his toys in his cot/room alone before Mummy is ready to get up. Sounds harsh but he will soon shift to a later pattern once he realises there is no TV on in the mornings - he is probably waking up excited to watch his programmes....

My ds has become fixated with Postman Pat over the past couple of weeks and now demands it every morning, afternoon and evening. I hide the DVDs and just say later after dinner) cue tantrums and tears, but he soon accepts it and I get the lego out.

I know it's very hard entertaining them for 12 hours a day, we always go out every day, every morning, back home for lunch and nap and then afternoon (if I have the energy! If we don't go out, I find he won't sleep as well that night and spending all day in our small flat drives me (and him) mad....

If we don't go in the afternoon, he is now 'having to learn' to get bored by himself and not have the TV on, I will play with him for a while but have been reading on here about how important it is to let them entertain themselves and be happy in their own company.

One thing I have started doing is an hour long bath in the afternoon with stories and rotating toys so that kills some time. Help mummy tidy up, sit in the highchair with painting and flash cards, when the weather is better that will really help.

Good luck, the key is to just say no and eventually he will accept it and find other ways to entertain himself.....

Beatrixpotty Tue 26-Mar-13 23:14:52

Some days my 3.5 year old also has about 3 hours of screen time,combination of DVDs and iPad,doesn't really like tv anymore as only ever have cbeebies or milkshake on and some things are too babyish now.Other days when at nursery maybe has about an hour in total.I do feel bad about it and would much rather he entertained himself some other way but I've just had my 3rd baby and can't take them out at all at the moment so spending more time in the house.Tryingto balance it out with lots of story reading at bedtime & when weather is better,outdoor play.Some days when I think they have had too much screen time I have to I hide the iPad or unplug the tv & there are a few tears but they always find something else to do.My 3 year old will play with lego/trains/dinosaurs & his brother(2) will just look at pictures in books.I agree though ,early mornings are easy to fill with tv and when they come back tired from nursery it is just my default to turn it on whilst I'm making their tea.I think I rely on it more because I've got all 3 of them and if I just had 1 I would try and do more interactive one to one things.

onceipopicantstop Wed 27-Mar-13 07:40:45

You are right I do need to cut back. I don't think he's waking up for the tv though - he's just awake and wants his breakfast! We have tried getting him to sleep later but he just seems to be an early bird!! He doesn't have a nap anymore - not that dropping it made any difference to his overnight sleeping! We do an activity out of the house at least once a day but even so there are alot of hours to fill. I guess I'm just not a very good entertainer!! Will have to work harder!

Neiffer Thu 28-Mar-13 09:42:25

I've been wondering the same thing too. My little boy is also an early riser, and the tv goes on for 30 mins so I can get breakfast Etc ready. We tend to watch a bit of tv as wind down eg we've just come back from park and are having a snack and watching tv. Will do something this arvo then prob watch a bit of tv as a chill out. Combined he probably watches 3 he's a day but we do other things as well so I don't think it's that bad to be honest. If all we did was watch tv then I think that would be bad. I don't have it on as background noise either as I hate it. Maybe that's worse as he does actually watch it then...I'm due dc2 in a few mths and suspect the tv will be on a whole lot more...which I do already feel guilty for!

lifesobeautiful Thu 28-Mar-13 09:50:10

My DS (2.5) goes through stages - sometimes he wants to watch loads (perhaps 3 hours a day on and off) - and I let him. At other times (now for instance) he doesn't feel like it at all - and just wants to do imagination games and puzzles and drawing.

I am totally lenient with how much he watches, and always have been. And unlike many of his friends who have major restrictions on it, he's never been obsessed. I'm also a SAHM and I thank heavens for the TV.

These programs are aimed at children and brilliant for learning. As long as you're not sticking him on there all day - and still do other things with him and go out and read etc, I just don't believe it's a problem.

With regards to the research, DS has always been allowed to watch TV and he spoke earlier, knew his colours and animals earlier, recognised faces earlier than any of his peers. My sister adored TV too (unlike me and my brother) and she was headgirl, went to Oxford and heads up a huge advertising company. I on there other hand was blah about TV, and was a total reprobate until I was in my early 20s! So if I was you, I'd give yourself a break, let him watch TV and I'd stop feeling guilty!

PS - my DS also used to wake up at 5.30 (nightmare!) and I don't know what I would have done without Cbeebies!

Sunshine200 Thu 28-Mar-13 10:22:23

My dd wakes at about 5.30 too, and she always watches tv in the morning, to be honest it is often on in the background whilst we are doing other things. I also use it to cheer her up when she seems extra wingey, it usually works. As long as you do other things with him too I wouldn't feel too guilty, there is too much for us mums to worry about as it is.

onceipopicantstop Fri 29-Mar-13 20:28:15

Well I've been making an effort to keep an eye on how much TV he's watching and it hasn't been on as much for the last few days. I have realised though that even though it was often on for a couple of hours in the morning he wasn't just sat there watching it the whole time - he'd wander off and find something to play with for a while then come back. So perhaps it wasn't quite as bad as I thought! Think I will just keep an eye on TV time, but accept that sometimes he will watch more than other days. As mentioned above Cbeebies is all pretty educational anyway! (She says trying to reassure herself...)

RatPants Fri 29-Mar-13 20:31:57

Probably quite a lot but it doesn't bother me really. He eats well, sleeps well, does plenty of activities, gets lots of fresh air and exercise and is completely fine developmentally etc etc etc, it's just something he enjoys doing when at home.

I don't watch any tv and dh is only home in the evenings so if the tv is on in the daytime it's tuned into Ceebeebies.

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: