Three Tips for Making Kids’ TV Watching Time Well Spent
For decades we’ve been bombarded with messages about how watching television rots young brains, and dire warnings to have Junior put down the television remote, or else.
Television is like any other technology – it can be used for good or ill. With a few rules for responsible watching, parents can use television as an engaging and effective educational tool.
- Monitor content – This is a no-brainer. Make sure the shows you watch with your children are appropriate, and try to steer them to shows with educational content. You don’t have to force them to watch documentaries, but try to steer them toward shows with scientific or other concepts.
- Discuss shows with your kids – Watch TV with your kids and discuss what you see. Answer questions that they may have, and discuss any academic or moral lessons that the shows might have delivered.
- Find educational moments in entertainment content – On many television shows, characters may explore a current event or use a scientific or business concept to solve a problem. For example, characters on a sitcom may use entrepreneurial concepts to start a business, or a sci-fi show may talk about black holes or related concepts. Find these moments and discuss the concepts used in the episode with your children.
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