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TV for under threes

(28 Posts)
roseability Wed 27-Aug-08 21:35:43

There was a wee article about how damaging TV for under threes is in Saturday's Guardian.

How much is too much? Is any TV too much?

Do any mums get through the first three years with no TV?

Not meant to be a judgemental post (my DS 2.4 watches TV occasionally) just interested in other mum's opinions

I do get a little sick of books/newspapers/government telling us how to parent. Motherhood had become so political!

sleepycat Wed 27-Aug-08 21:37:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

K999 Wed 27-Aug-08 21:38:05

My dd is 18 months and watches TV - she loves it but she does not have the concentration or the inclination to watch it for more than a few minutes at a time!! Everything in moderation and as long as parents are monitoring how much TV kids are watching, I cant see the problem!! Especially when you are trying to make dinner!! grin

FanjolinaJolly Wed 27-Aug-08 21:38:20

DD has SN.

She adores "Something Special" and ITNG.

Other than that she doesn't really watch,though she did giggle at the screen when I was awatching the athletics.

BloodySmartarse Wed 27-Aug-08 21:40:08



i do understand that its possible that it hinders the concentration span... and limits the development of the imagination... i even trained as a montessori teacher and boy, are they not keen on telly for v young.

but i still 'use' telly, cbeebies et al, at times to get a bit of time/space while the dc are entertained, and i really dont think it can be all that bad. or i wouldnt do it, i guess.
i USED to stress about it... but i gave up.

my children are bound to be so g&t of course, that it wont really hinder them at all wink

ilovemydog Wed 27-Aug-08 21:40:33

I think it's like anything else - in moderation is OK. We get cable and Baby TV is good in short periods.

Also, the Baby Einstein DVDs are brilliant!

The temptation is to let the TV be a babysitter, and sometimes it's better than the alternative - i.e. a toddler running around rampant when one is feeding a baby.

But I try not to let DD watch it alone, and to limit her time.

LittleMissBliss Wed 27-Aug-08 21:41:59

I'm a little worried about this as i saw this come up on another post. DS 9 months sometimes watches TV when he's crawling about and it's on. I sometimes have it on in the kitchen when i'm cooking and he'll watch a little whilst eating or playing in his high chair.

RhinestoneCowgirl Wed 27-Aug-08 21:43:08

I limit it for DS (2) as he gets pretty glazed over when he watches it. Handy if I'm desperate tho!

There are lots of other more active things that I would prefer he did - today he did 'washing up', played football with next door's kids, chalked all over the patio, played with his train set, went for a walk with me, did some painting and helped me cook tea. But a bit of Beebies whilst I made his lunch is fair enough I think!

K999 Wed 27-Aug-08 21:44:17

I dont think its anything to worry about tbh! Its only TV! Personally, I think dd's lovely singing voice has come from watching My Friends Tigger and Pooh!!

roseability Wed 27-Aug-08 21:45:29

Of course it is easy for 'researchers' to state this not taking into consideration that most mothers don't have extended family/community to watch LOs while tea is cooked/they get a break etc

rookiemater Wed 27-Aug-08 21:54:40

I tried to restrict TV because I read a book saying it hindered young childrens development.

However the reality is that DS wakes up at 7.00 and we need to shower and get ready for work, then when I collect him from the CM he is tired and needs a little wind down time.

It's not ideal, I would rather that he stacked wooden bricks and perused educational tomes, but generally he loves being active, plays well with his toys and shows an interest in his books so I don't think it is doing him a great deal of harm.

combustiblelemon Wed 27-Aug-08 21:57:51

It's not a new thing. This is from 2007.

Portofino Wed 27-Aug-08 22:01:02

I think it's the quality more than anything and finding stuff that is appropriate for their age group. My dd watches far too much tv in my opinion but we are careful about what she watches. Baby TV is quite entertaining for the little ones as is the Teletubbies / In the Night Garden.

I think when they are little they don't actually watch that much - even if it is on all the time - more like a bit of telly, a bit harrassing the cat, a bit eating something they found under the coffee table...

As they get a bit older a lot of the Cbeebies stuff is quite educational and most of the programmes tend to have a quite strong moral message about correct behaviour etc etc. What i can't bear is the adverts on channels like Tiny Pops - especially in the run up to Xmas it was a nightmare. My dd loved some of the shows on there, but when she told me that if I "bought Cilit Bang I wouldn't need any other cleaning products" I turned it off!

AccidentalMum Wed 27-Aug-08 22:02:18

We don't have a TV because DD1 was so so addicted to it. She is much nicer and sleeps for an extra hour without it.

Igotwheels Wed 27-Aug-08 22:15:44

Here is a link to media on the matter. Have a read. I don't stop my DS watching TV, but i don't have it on often myself, and he only asks for TV if it has been raining a lot and he is born. Then he lasts for about ten minutes and then switches it off himself.

Many of my friends put the TV on when they cook dinner to keep children out of mischief. I have never done this and DS plays... sometimes gets up to things, but usually is fine.

TV research

RhinestoneCowgirl Wed 27-Aug-08 22:18:43

I would say tho, that my mum managed to cope with 3 children (7, 5 and newborn) without the assistance of TV. We got one when I was 8 or 9 (I'm the oldest). I was a fairly bookish child and I think it had a reasonable impact on me not having a TV around.

RhinestoneCowgirl Wed 27-Aug-08 22:19:36

And I have radio on rather than TV for myself during the day as grown-up daytime tv is dire

MrsSnorty Wed 27-Aug-08 22:20:03

"more than half of three year olds have a TV in their bedrooms" (from that link). Is that true? I don't know anyone who's three year old does.

Igotwheels Wed 27-Aug-08 22:21:39

Just read through all the articles. OMG switch off or freecycle your TVs ..... No more telly....ever, ever. Panic!

Hope it doesn't scare anyone too much. Perhaps we should all post in ten years time on whether our children have reduced concentration, didn't make it to be brain surgeons, are school bullies or just thugs!

Cathpot Wed 27-Aug-08 22:28:40

I think it is in many ways another stick to beat yourself with. The every fact you are on here worrying about it suggests your kids will be fine. Obviously if the kids are parked infront of an unmonitored TV all day its not good, but mixed in with other activties I genuinely cant see the harm if its appropriate stuff. DD1 had a real thing for Balamory and it did wonders for her learning her colours etc, lots about cbeebies is great, not least the multiracial aspect of it as we live in a very monocultural rural area. I also use the tv to keep DD1 (3.5) in one place while I cook her tea and give her some wind down time. DD2 (1.5) only really watches ITNG so she potters about between the 2 of us. If I had a play room I could watch them in while I cooked or as some one else suggested a relative to help, then maybe I wouldnt but as it is it works for us. Incidentally my DH grew up without any TV at all and is now completely addicted to it...

Cathpot Wed 27-Aug-08 22:31:38

I can understand the argument for not having the TV on adult programmes in the background, and I dont do that, but I often have the radio on, not sure if thats any better.

combustiblelemon Wed 27-Aug-08 22:33:45

I'm more concerned about the effect on melatonin levels.

ILikeYourSleeves Wed 27-Aug-08 22:46:47

I went to a weaning workshop once and there was a speech and language therapist there who said that TV is bad as it's not done in real time so it gives the child the wrong impression of how the world works etc. Also it's far better they learn from 1-1 social interaction with a real person and too much TV can prevent this. Obviously this is true but it's also very hard to do this all the time! So I think everything in moderation. I let DS (10 months) watch ITNG once a day if we are in and that's all he watches. I have the TV on sometimes (for me) while he is playing on the floor and he usually just glances at it but gets on with bashing his toys

We could worry about everything but as long as we are sensible about it and don't plonk our kids in front of it for 6 hours a day then it's fine I say.

laweaselmys Thu 28-Aug-08 11:53:14

There was research done by a Cambridge professor fairly recently about how kids TV generally and TV for really young kids is really massively ineffective educationally... but as far as the Prof who'd done the research was concerned, that wasn't enough to make him ban TV for his kids. Yes we know, in large doses it can interfere with kids development, but in small doses it's just a harmless bit of entertainment.

peacelily Thu 28-Aug-08 12:06:07

My dd(23m) watches bits of it most days, she likes anything where there's dancing so she can copy it, she LOVES music and dancing and i don't think this is harmful at all.

Basically it's Big Cook Little Cook whilst I'm making my lunch for work in the morning and 64 Zoo Lane to wind down in the evening. She also loves anything with (real) animals in. I limit it to max 45 mins a day and if we're together we often talk about what we're watching making animal sounds etc.

Only have freeview tho, have puposefully avoided getting Sky becuaes of plethora and content of hideous kids tv channels on there as well as ads and violent stuff.

My friend has a dd nearly 4 who's pretty much addicted to Tv and always has been, obsessed with watching it since a baby as friend used it as a babysitter when a SAHM.

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