I live in a house without a TV, I grew up in a house without a TV, I have never owned a TV. Why have I decided to live without one? I live a busy and full life and have no idea when I would fit in watching TV, but then I suppose I have never tried to. We do not live in a 'screen' free house, we have a screen, projector and a means of playing DVD's which we do watch, mostly documentaries.
I am always interested and intrigued to read about TV watching and children. I have no doubt that watching too much cannot be a good thing but how on earth do you measure how much is too much, does it depend on the age of the child or the type of programmes watched?
As parents it's easy to use the TV as a babysitter, but are you just setting up problems for yourself when the amount of time that it is on increases and increases to the point where, when you do turn it off you are greeted with anger and disappointment at it being turned off and a child(ren) who are at a loss as to how to occupy their time. Many children have TVs in their bedrooms how is it possible in such a household to be aware of how much TV your child is watching and what they are watching?
When you are watching TV and for that matter DVDs your brain goes into sleep mode, it pretty much switches off. If you were to watch many hours of TV or DVDs in a day you brain is not being actively used. It is therefore not surprising that if children have many hours of screen time, that when this stops they are at loss as to what to do. Their brains are not used to being used in the manner required for any kind of play. My children have, from a early age, engaged in self directed imaginative
play, which usually involves talking out loud with whatever they are
playing with. They are always busy and never ask what can I do now.
In moderation, like so many things in life, TV watching has its place, it is working out what 'moderation' is appropriate for your family and sticking to it.