T Nation

Australia: Parents Aren't Fit to Make Decisions

Australia: ban TV for under-twos
Children under the age of two should be banned from watching television, according to guidelines prepared for the Australian government.

The guidelines warn that exposure to television at such an early age can delay language development, affect the ability of a child to concentrate and lead to obesity.

The recommendations also suggest that children aged two to five should watch no more than one hour of television a day.

The recommended viewing limits vary wildly from the actual amount of television and DVDs viewed by Australian children.

Australian statistics show that four-month-old infants watch an of average 44 minutes of television each day and that children under the age of four with pay television at home spend at least three hours a day in front of the screen.

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Wow. So much to pick apart here. Full Disclosure: I don’t have a ‘streaming’ TV in my house with 2 kids. We get one channel on the rabbit ears, and a DVD player. Having said that, they seem to be surviving OK having been exposed to “TeleTubbies”, “Baby Einstein”, and “Blues Clues” – and, I didn’t need a government ban on media in my household…

It’s a good thing.

TV makes children dumb. There is no better or worse program for two year olds, so it’s not a matter of choice.

You let your infant kid watch TV, it will get dumber.

By the way, advertisments targeting children should also be banned completely.

[quote]Schwarzfahrer wrote:
It’s a good thing.

TV makes children dumb. There is no better or worse program for two year olds, so it’s not a matter of choice.

You let your infant kid watch TV, it will get dumber.

By the way, advertisments targeting children should also be banned completely.

[/quote]

That might be too much of a generalization.

I have a 4 yr old and a 2 yr old daughter. If they are good all day we allow them to watch 2 shows or one movie in the evening. Otherwise they only get to watch a show incoporating a second language just before bed.

Aside from that we read with them, teach them morals and decision making, draw with them, sing with them. Hell I even through complex biological processes once in a while for giggles. But they are extremely intelligent. But in general they usually chose shows geared more towards teenagers, and my younger daughter loves watching MMA and jui jitsu competitions with me. An example of her learning, she is 2, an older cousin was being mean to her older sister, she pulled him away while seated using a very technical rear naked, the little boy cried to his mother(my wife’s sister) and my 2 yr old said " he not hurt, he mean, he a whoose" seems whe picked up pretty good to me.

[quote]SteelyD wrote:
and, I didn’t need a government ban on media in my household…[/i]
[/quote]

I don’t see that in the story.

[quote]Sloth wrote:
SteelyD wrote:
and, I didn’t need a government ban on media in my household…[/i]

I don’t see that in the story.[/quote]

Neither do I.

[quote]Schwarzfahrer wrote:
It’s a good thing.

TV makes children dumb. There is no better or worse program for two year olds, so it’s not a matter of choice.

You let your infant kid watch TV, it will get dumber.

By the way, advertisments targeting children should also be banned completely.

[/quote]

Actually kids programs like Blues Clues have been shown to increase reading age and mental acuity in children.

Mental acuity is raised by interacting with the parents and forcing the child to “think” about everything.

The reality is as parents sometimes we need an hour to ourselves for whatever and this is when a tv show is good to keep them quiet and entertained for a while. TV is neither good nor bad.

My son just ups and turns the TV and dvd player “off” when he has had enough, lol, @ 17 months. It’s funny how he is not all that interested in it. BUT drawers, yes those all must be opened and inspected. Every cabinet nook and cranny of the house gets hours of incessant attention, as do all appliances, kitchen aids and such. Seems like he prefers real things to staring at a tube. Good.

It’s crazy to me that little kids can use the internet now.

Australia is one of those “every other industrialized countr(ies) in the world” that have universal healthcare. And this is the example they want us to follow.