I was having a conversation in a Ravelry forum about children and T.V. watching and did a little math with the current AAP "recommendations" on T.V. allowance for children over 3. Now, I love movies and definitely have my favorite T.V. show; I also have wonderful memories of Disney movies, classic musicals and TGIF family nights spent with a special (delivered!) treat of pizza gathered around the television for a couple hours (in fact a majority of my and my husbands Christmas list is often movies and the new season of whatever)... but "Screen Time" - the time spent in front of anything electronic (cellphones, computer, video games, T.V., etc.) is definitely on my radar and I really try to challenge myself not to use it too much right now, as to avoid the "T.V. Baby Sitter" trap. While I definitely understand it's benefits to give Mom or Dad a reprieve, or as an educational tool** it does seem to be something that should be approached with caution. So with that in mind I thought I'd just share a little math with you to consider when thinking about your kids and yourself!
1 hour a day t.v. =
7 hrs/week = approx. 1 average school day (9 a.m. to 4 p.m. non stop)
1 avg. SD/week x 52 weeks = 52 SD/Year
(52 SD/ year)/180 (average number of school days per year) = 28.8% of the school days in the school year only watching television.
Would you be okay with your child's teacher setting your child in front of a T.V. for over 1/4 of the time dedicated to learning?
2 hours a day t.v. =
14 hrs/week = One Saturday in front of the t.v. from 9 a.m. until 11 p.m. non stop
(One Saturday (9 a.m. until 11 p.m.)/week) x 52 weeks = 52 Saturdays of pure dawn till dusk t.v. watching
52 Saturdays/30 days (average month) = 1.73 months of dawn till dusk t.v. watching a year
1 - 2 hours a day doesn't seem like much, until you start to add it up.
** Though I always like to point out the real baby Albert Einstein seemed to accomplish quite a bit without the infant-geared "educational" movies, books and CD's that borrow his name (and so did baby Mozart, baby Beethoven; not to mention baby Newton, baby Plato, baby Da Vinci, etc.).