Re: television


In a message dated 10/17/2003 6:46:28 PM Central Standard Time, writes:

Do you think at 4
years my daughter should be the one deciding what shows to watch?
What about the influence of commercial TV? Do you not think that has an
affect on the gimmes and yes I did read about 'Magical Thinking and Spoiled
Children' and agree completely. So does that mean I should not worry about
TV? What about the news or just the news flashes? Regular prime-time news
coverage is not really something a 4 year old needs to hear about let alone
a 29
year old.
My four year old decides what to watch. As does my five year old. They
always have. When I broke my ankle a year ago (has it really been a year?), they
learned to work the remote themselves because asking me would have taken too
much time. They pop in a video or dvd, change the channels, adjust the volume
(usually lower) whenever they want. This morning they watched 101 Dalmatians
and now they are playing with their new-to-them action figures I got at a used
toy sale. Robin just said to Batman "We can go draw a picture, play with
clay, make a house out of blocks or help my daddy paint the steps. What do you
want to do?"

They have never elected to watch the news, it's not interesting to them.
They have chosen opera, ballet and eyewitness movies about dinosaurs or cats,
things like that. They have also chosen Dora, Telletubbies, Arthur and other
non-educational shows. We have GREAT conversations during and after Arthur, but
I don't like the show at all. They enjoy it when Mark and I watch "Whose
Line is it Anyway" aka The Funny Show, because they like to see us laugh. They
aren't as happy with a Ken Burns documentary, but snuggle with us anyway.

My two love the commercials that come on between shows and on the videos, but
have only once asked for something. Sometimes they recognize their own toys
on the commercials. They are learning how to make purchasing decisions.
Better now than when they are young adults with their own credit card debt! They
understand our budget limitations and make choices accordingly. I remember
thinking my mother was just mean for not getting me a particular Barbie, my kids
see how money works. Commercialism surrounds us, better to learn how to deal
with it than avoid it.


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