Friday, November 4, 2011
We are still the zero-fun parents - now, with even less fun!
I always knew that I wanted to limit Violet's exposure to television, but deep down, I wondered if I could. I've written before about my occasional desire to do away with our TV altogether, and although I had friends and relatives tell me that I would come to appreciate the television once Violet arrived, the idea of the television as a babysitter never sat well with me. But I knew myself, and I figured that I would eventually give in to the easy out of plopping Violet in front of the idiot box. We all have to get stuff done. I figured my wife would sit Violet in front of the TV more than I would, but she rarely does. I’m the one that resorts to it, but still infrequently – a Baby Einstein video once a week or so, a viewing of Michael Rosen's "We're Going on a Bear Hunt" on the laptop to distract our way through feeding time when necessary, and we just watched our first episode of Blue’s Clues last week. I was starting to feel more comfortable with the idea of television and my daughter, but then I read an article about the new recommendations from the
of Pediatrics. Concisely put, they say there is no such thing as educational programming for children under two. They’re just too young to know what’s happening on screen, but the time they spend staring at it distracts them from playing and interacting. Now, I know pronouncements like this are aimed at people who drop their kids in front of the TV for hours at a stretch; the Academy’s report found that something around forty percent of households with infants have the TV on all day, but it still makes my already tentative use of the TV as a babysitter even less appealing. So, in addition to us withholding sugar, we’ll also be denying our daughter her God-given right to have her 12-24 month brain warped by TV. The way our brains were warped. Maybe once a month, we'll let her watch some Sesame Street. Or an episode of The Simpsons. But only from Season 9 or earlier. We want her to have standards. American Academy