With your first born child, it’s pretty easy to control his diet of everything—sugar, television, war toys, choice of friends—for the first few years anyway. But then he hits school age, somewhere after five years old, kindergarten age, and the once controlling parent begins to question some of her controls. My child is the only one who doesn't...and now you fill in the blank. Most parents know that they are fighting a losing battle if they are too orthodox about their restrictions. Never … [Read more...] about The “Right” Age for Video Games
It seems like there is something for everyone in this Winter Olympics, and it’s easy to become an addict. The entire event is packed with heart-racing excitement as well as examples of natural talent, acquired skill, and athleticism. Don’t you just sit on the edge of your chair? But there is more. While I am a believer in limited screen time for children, especially commercial television, the Olympics are providing our children (and us) with important lessons and messages that are hard to … [Read more...] about Olympic Idols
I heard a radio advertisement this week for a DVD , Your Baby Can Read, or some name like that. Needless to say, it grabbed my attention. This program promises to teach your toddler, even infant, to read. A mother of a three year old claimed that she had been using it for a year, and now her child was reading on a third grade level. Please save me from being sick! It took everything in my body not to drive off the road…as I seethed. Why on earth does anyone want her toddler (or infant) … [Read more...] about Should Baby Read?
Home is the first school house. And children’s attitudes about books and reading begin at home at the earliest ages. Pretty much all children start out loving books. Young children display their love of books in all kinds of ways: piling them high to make towers; pulling them off the shelf; carrying them around in a wheel barrow; organizing them according to size, color, shape; turning the pages, or just chewing on them! All of these are early ways of experiencing books. Most children … [Read more...] about Cultivating a Love of Books and Reading
Would you allow your child to eat and eat and eat, whatever and whenever he wanted? Of course not. It’s not much different with a child’s media intake. Just like a parent implements portion and quality control with food, so must he implement the same controls with media. It is a child’s rightful job to try to get the very most of whatever he likes the most, be it candy, television, computer time. It takes many years for a child to develop the ability to see the big picture, thinking about … [Read more...] about Balancing Your Child’s Media Diet
The topic for my first blog on my new website had been on my mind when I paid a visit to my cousin Sarah and her boys, ages 5 and 7. After spending the afternoon with them, I knew I had found my topic. Sarah lives in a TV free house. (Okay, her husband, also a professor like Sarah, wrote a book about the effects of television viewing on children and how to make it work for your family.) But here's the thing of it, those little boys don't miss it, and they don't ask for it. What was more … [Read more...] about Cousin Sarah’s kids