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National Turn off TV Next week


Thursday: Health Issues and Ideas

I’ve never considered participating in Turn off TV week.  I love my evenings curling up on the couch, watching my favorite shows with my husband in the quiet darkness of the house.  Law and Order, the Office, Chuck, Heroes, Food Network Challenges… I’ll stop there.

BUT, According to Screentime.org,

  1. Seventy percent of day-care centers use TV during a typical day.–Tashman, Billy, “Sorry Ernie, TV isn’t Teaching,” New York Times, Nov. 12, 1994
  2. In a study of preschoolers (ages 1-4), a child’s risk of being overweight increased by six percent for every hour of television watched per day.  If that child had a TV in his or her bedroom, the odds of being overweight jumped an additional thirty-one percent for every hour watched.  Preschool children with TVs in their bedroom watched an additional 4.8 hours of TV or videos every week.–Dennison, et.al. 2002
  3. Research now indicates that for every hour of television children watch each day, their risk of developing attention-related problems later increases by ten percent.  For example, if a child watches three hours of television each day, the child would be thirty percent more likely to develop attention deficit disorder.–D. Christakis, Pediatrics, April 2004
  4. One in four children under the age of two years has a TV in his or her bedroom.–Zero to Six: Electronic Media in the Lives of Infants, Toddlers and Preschoolers, Kaiser Family Foundation and the Children’s Digital Media Centers, 2003
  5. The more TV preschoolers watch, the less well they do academically in the first grade; also, The more TV preschoolers watch, the less well-socialized they are in the first grade.–Burton, Sydney, James Calonico and Dennis McSeveney, “Effects of Preschool Television Watching on First-Grade Children,” Journal of Communication, Summer 1979
  6. Children in households where the TV is on “always” or “most of the time” are less likely to read than are children in other homes. Zero to Six: Electronic Media in the Lives of Infants, Toddlers and Preschoolers, Kaiser Family Foundation and the Children’s Digital Media Centers, 2003
  7. Children six and under spend an average of two hours a day using screen media, about the same amount of time they spend playing outside, and well over the amount they spend reading or being read to (39 minutes).–Zero to Six: Electronic Media in the Lives of Infants, Toddlers and Preschoolers, Kaiser Family Foundation and the Children’s Digital Media Centers, 2003

Old TV

Natalie Monson

I'm a registered dietitian, mom of 4, avid lover of food and strong promoter of healthy habits. Here you will find lots of delicious recipes full of fruits and veggies, tips for getting your kids to eat better and become intuitive eaters and lots of resources for feeding your family.

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We’re doing this! When my first son was born, we gave up cable and watched very little TV, but we lived in an area with local channels. I’m a bit paranoid, so I insisted on cable (for access to news of the outside world) when we moved to our tiny corner of Wyoming. I hate to admit it, but I’ve relied on TV a bit too much since my daughter was born. I’m looking forward to the chance to reclaim our house with a TV that is off in a bigger way next week.

So, no TV next week – hopefully! I’m not, however, giving up all screen time. I’ll still be on my computer some.

I’m a bit older. Growing up we were NEVER allowed to watch any daytime TV, after dinner and homework we could maybe watch an hour or two. There were so many benefits, as you mentioned, my brothers are all brilliant. Good habits were formed. In fact, I still don’t want to have the TV on during the day. If I want to see what’s on Oprah, I’ll go on the internet and see what her show is for the day, and if it’s really enticing, I’ll turn it on and try to cook dinner while I watch it. Otherwise, if the TV gets turned on, it grates on my nerves! Today’s a great day to send the kids outside for sledding or building a snowman. Last chance before spring is here!

I’ve been reading several blogs on this & I considered this but it meant giving up a bit of “freedom” on my part. I HATE the fact that I look at it that way & after reading your post & the comments, I think I will be willing to give it a try. i’d like to say this will be easy but I anticipate it will be quite difficult but I hope we can use this to begin to make more lifestyle changes.

That info is very interesting! I can’t believe that 25% of kids under the age of 2 have a TV in their bedroom- that is insane!! We’ve been debating whether or not to get rid of our Cable- this might be a good opportunity for a test run!!