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Any radical unschoolers here? - Page 14

post #261 of 267
Quote:
Originally Posted by mammal_mama View Post
Even if the TV's on all day, free-range toddlers will be getting up to climb on the furniture, bang on the pots and pans, and so on.
Are we all friendly-feeling enough to bring up the tv thing again? : I tend to think (and no, I've never gone totally limitless with tv/computer) that different personalities react differently to visual media -- some people are not that interested, or are interested only when the content is interesting to them and then they're done, and some people just gog out on flashing colors. My kids seem to have inherited this from my dh, who gets that "Cletus the slack jawed yokel" look in the presence of any kind of tv images. I'm not saying they aren't getting anything out of this watching, but it's just such *easy* entertainment, that my kids always gravitate towards *watching* and not *doing* whenever given the choice. When we last moved, we gave away our tv (haven't had cable for years anyway, only used it for movies), but still have DVD's and computer access, which is my 6 (today is his birthday!) year old son's primary obsession -- computer games. My almost 8 year old dd used to be also obsessed with movies (and gets a lot out of them!) but now that she can read, and has learned to do a lot of other fun things, she seems less interested in visual media. She will sit and listen to stories on CD literally all day long, though, which is fine by me.

Again, wrapping up , I know that when I engage my son in other activities, he chooses that over computer games, but his automatic choice of activity when we're home is to play games on the computer. If I don't limit this (by suggesting another activity), he would sit at the computer all day long. Ok, not ALL DAY LONG, but longer than what I think is healthy -- and I do think that "too much" tv/movies/edutainment/video games does inhibit their ability to entertain themselves... or rather, if they pull away from their electronic drug of choice to do something else, they have trouble (in my experience) figuring out anything else to do, if the electronic drug option is still sitting there so easy to get at... I hear "I'm so bored" waaaaaaaaay more often now that he has figured out computer games, whenever he isn't playing them or engaged in something else that is easily super fun. Am I making any sense?

So, do RU'ers just try to engage their kids when they do this? SAy "hey, lets go for a walk!" or whatever? What about those days when you are busy with life, and the kids are somewhat left to their own devices -- would you ever say "it seems like you've been on the computer a lot today, is there anything else you'd like to do?" and help them find something else to do? I won't pretend that it doesn't bother me when he plays for so long that his eyes turn red -- does this not bother you RU'ers?

I guess I'm advocating helping kids discover their own limits, when they are the type of kid who is totally content to sit and watch, or sit and play a video game all day long, rather than saying "one hour of screen time per day" because life ebbs and flows, and some days we need more than an hour, sometimes a week goes by that we're so busy that none of us touch the computer -- is this middle ground, or is it (not that I care if I fit the mold ) in line with RU?

Quote:
Originally Posted by UUMom View Post
If so, I'm sorry. But if something is one thing, but we twist it to be something else, is it anything?
To me, this is the same thing as people saying "I had a natural childbirth except for the epidural"....it leaves me but I don't generally call them on it -- I don't care what they call it, but I don't really need to have ownership of specific labels. AP is a vast umbrella of parenting techniques that for some people involves BF'ing, co-sleeping, babywearing, GD, not vax'ing, homelearning, etc, etc, etc, but for other people, if they receive a baby bjorn for their baby shower, they consider themselves AP. Unschooling (and radical unschooling) are similar to this, IMO, though there are people who are protective of the label, and I respect their desire to defend its' honor!!

Which is why I try not to apply labels to our family, we're way too wishy washy! But I am really loving learning from everyone here!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by transformed View Post
my son is 4. we have a "bedtime routine" , We started it when he stopped nursing to sleep at age 2 1/2 and for the most part it works well-but-latley he has been wanting to "hang out with us" rather than go to sleep at this time. I love my little guy but I will go nuts if I dont have my alone time with dh to vent and talk and reconnect-we dont see that much of eachother.
Our kids are night owls, and if we lay down with them, we're asleep for the night too. I would love for them to announce their own bedtime at 8 pm and scoot off to bed on their own, but that's just not our reality. What we do is to just find our moments alone when the kids are occupied doing whatever they do -- in the wise words of John Leguizamo: "whoever invented cartoons was a horny dad" : We usually have time to chat in the evenings when the kids get involved in their own thing, and we absolutely use movies as a babysitter for "special time" when the kids are not as involved in something as "special time" would require -- we don't suggest movies for that purpose, but if they're watching a movie, and we're not otherwise occupied...:

But if your bedtime routine works, and he goes to sleep when you want him too, all the power to you! My kids like to have us lay down with them to go to sleep, and if we do that early enough for us to have "grownup time" in the evenings, they just lie there awake, don't get as much time with dad, and usually, we fall asleep too.

Ok, back at it!
post #262 of 267
Quote:
Originally Posted by tiffani View Post
If I don't limit this (by suggesting another activity), he would sit at the computer all day long. Ok, not ALL DAY LONG, but longer than what I think is healthy --
My kids sometimes do things longer than *I* ever would, but that doesn't mean to me that it's unhealthy. What I've seen with my ds and computer games is that his interest goes in bursts. This weekend, some new preview of GuildWars came out, and ds was on a lot, but I know that his interest will run out eventually and he'll move on to something else.

Everyone at my house gets engrossed in activities though--sometimes it's a book, sometimes a video series, sometimes writing, sometimes games or crafts...it's just natural for us to go through these cycles.

Quote:
So, do RU'ers just try to engage their kids when they do this? SAy "hey, lets go for a walk!" or whatever?
I don't this specifically for game usage. But I've surely said, "You've been at that a while, want to take a break and go for a walk or.... whatever?" I do it for myself too, when I've been sewing so long that my eyes are getting bleary. Sometimes, the kids don't realize how long they've been at something and my suggestion makes them take notice and realize they need a break. Other times, they're on a roll and don't want to stop, so I don't force it.

I don't think it's "bad" to spend a lot of time at one activity, but I do know that my kids have other things they want to do, or places to go, so we talk about how to fit everything in. So, I don't limit any particular activity, but we do talk about managing their time so they can do what they want to do.

Sometimes, they DO spend much of the day on one activity. Other times, they plan their days around a variety of things.
post #263 of 267
Oh, no! Not the TV thang!

OK. I am not comfortable with free range TV for toddlers. There I said it.
Again.
post #264 of 267
Tiffani -- sure, I sometimes suggest something my children and I can do together. Like SagMom, I don't specifically do this with video games. And it's not always that I'm concerned about my child's activity. Sometimes I just see an opportunity for my older dd and I to do something we enjoy, something that's harder to do when my younger dd is awake.

I'll say, "Hey, your sister's asleep. This'd be a good time for us to read that book, or play that game, if you want." She may want a few minutes to finish up what she's doing, but then she's usually thrilled to have some one-on-one time with just me. And she may suggest a whole different activity than the one I thought of.

I'll also give my input about nutrition. I might say, "Hey, you've been eating a whole lot of candy (or drinking a whole lot of pop) today. How about something with protein?"

To me, RU doesn't mean we never express concerns about our children's choices and their impact on health and well-being. It just means our input is something additional for them to consider, as they make their own choices about how to live their lives. And believe me, our input is very important to them.
post #265 of 267
Also, I'm learning how special it is to my girls whenever I drop what I'm doing, and just hang out and watch TV with them.
post #266 of 267
RA mamas.....I would love your input on this thread.

http://www.mothering.com/discussions...d.php?t=738366
post #267 of 267
Quote:
Originally Posted by mammal_mama View Post
Also, I'm learning how special it is to my girls whenever I drop what I'm doing, and just hang out and watch TV with them.
My dd loves this too. She wants my company and to laugh and enjoy the same thing together.
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