Formerly a no day-time TV mom, now want advice on movies/TV - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 20 Old 01-02-2012, 10:57 AM - Thread Starter
 
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So I am formerly a no TV mom, and I just decided it is no longer working for me. I have an 18 month old and my son will turn 4 in Feb. They are SO needy that I can't do anything and they get real cranky, and my almost 4 year old needs rest periods and I have just spent a year trying everything in my power to make this work, but I have decided instead of me losing it and getting frustrated, yelling, and making my children and myself enemies, I think a little TV would be a better choice. We had already watched family movies as a family, a couple nights a week, just never anything at all during the day and not every night.

So in lieu of going from NOTHING during the day to a big long movie during the day, I would like some short educational programs. What do you like on TV, and what do you think I could check out of the library? And do a lot of people do this small mix of TV off, and TV on? My son won't really watch Sesame Street, and he won't watch Veggie Tales, either. I don't know why, I guess that is just his personal preference.

 

Right now the kids are watching my son's "I Love Airplanes" movie that he got for Christmas, but I need more than just that. We also check "I Love Rockets" out of the library and have checked out some of the underwater and other animal type educational movies from the library. He loves elephants, so maybe I should search on that as well. Thanks! Any thoughts are welcomed here. ;-) Angie

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#2 of 20 Old 01-02-2012, 11:16 AM
 
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I LOVE LOVE LOVE zoboomafoo or the kraft brothers on PBS.  It is very educational and fun and about animals.  I would get the videos or it's on PBS a lot.

PBS is pretty good all around and i think most stations play cartoons in the morning.

http://pbskids.org/

at 4 i used to put my son on my lap and play computer games with him from pbs.


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#3 of 20 Old 01-02-2012, 01:18 PM
 
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I really understand where you're coming from - I have a 3.5-year-old and an 11-month-old.
But the American Academy of Pediatrics and Canadian Pediatric Society both say no TV under 2. And be suspicious about claims TV shows are "educational" - every specific claim that a media product (such as Baby Einstein) is educational has been disproven.
We've just recently let our three-year-old watch online videos (National Geographic Kids is a favorite site) and programs including Little Bear and Dinosaur Train but no more than one episode a day and only when his little brother is not watching.
He likes it and it's a great distraction when I'm having trouble getting the baby down for a nap.

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#4 of 20 Old 01-02-2012, 01:29 PM
 
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I have a 3.5 year old and a 22 month old.  They both enjoy Dinosaur Train.  My 22 month old daughter loves Barney, but my son, not so much.  I like Word World.  They also both enjoy Curious George.

 

I haven't heard of Zooboomafoo or the Kraft Brothers - we must have different PBS programming.  We don't have cable, so any tv for the kids is PBS or Netflix - but even then we usually stream PBS shows. 

 

My son also likes the "All About" series, with trains being his favorite.  He also likes the I Love Toy Trains series.  Our library carries both of those.

 

I haven't found any movies that my son enjoys and that I approve of.  The only movie he's sat through is Cars, but even then he was quite distracted.


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#5 of 20 Old 01-02-2012, 01:31 PM
 
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Interesting question for the tv free forum.

 

I'd agree with Megan and say be leery of "educational" programs.

 

Does your 18 month old like books? Mine loves them and will actually stay busy with them by herself (for a bit anyway) if we keep getting new ones at the library.

 

 

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#6 of 20 Old 01-02-2012, 01:34 PM
 
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My daughter just turned 2 and we have always let her watch a bit of TV, but there are only a couple of shows that she actually likes and will watch.  One is Sid the Science Kid on PBS, and Super Why also on PBS.  She really likes a show on CBC called Bo on the Go (we find it super annoying though haha!!)  She likes Sesame Street to a point, but definitely would never sit through the entire hour.  For us the TV is on, and she is almost never sitting and watching it.  She'll watch for 2-3 minutes, play for a bit, and sing along with the songs that are playing.   Another thing we did was went on youtube and created a playlist of some of her favourite songs and videos.  That way they are short clips, and she can sing along to the things she likes best.  Works for us anyway :)

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#7 of 20 Old 01-02-2012, 01:42 PM
 
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lol you prob should post this in the tv forum or something... i did not notice that.


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#8 of 20 Old 01-02-2012, 01:49 PM
 
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I would ask in the TV forum......I do let my kid watch about 1 hr maybe. Old school Seseme ST. and old muppet show.

 

I LOVE LOVE LOVE audio books!!!! GET OUT take a walk even if it is around the corner. Please don't "fall into" TV as a babysittier. It can be so easy to say OK just one more show.  

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#9 of 20 Old 01-02-2012, 02:00 PM
 
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We started with WonderPets at 18 months, when his blind granny was living with us. It gave him something for them to do together - he sat in her lap and watched it. He still thinks it's her favorite show, even though he rarely requests it anymore, he will when they are together.

 

Also liked Word World a lot, but not until age 3ish.

 

 


DS, 10/07. Allergies: peanut, egg, wheat. We've added dairy back in. And taken it back out again. It causes sandpaper skin with itchy patches and thrashing during sleep. Due w/ #2 late April, 2012.

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#10 of 20 Old 01-02-2012, 02:01 PM
 
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We also like Little Bear, but DS never took to it in a big way. He watches it mainly while using his nebulizer; it's a fairly calming show.


DS, 10/07. Allergies: peanut, egg, wheat. We've added dairy back in. And taken it back out again. It causes sandpaper skin with itchy patches and thrashing during sleep. Due w/ #2 late April, 2012.

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#11 of 20 Old 01-02-2012, 02:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yes, I actually thought about which forum to put this in, but I figured there are a lot of mamas w/ similar issues to me, and I am sure a lot of mamas try out TV.  I understand how it is bad for them before their brain is fully developed, and how educational shows are not really educational because children need an adult interacting w/ them to get that stuff.  When I only had ds my mom and I actually fought over this issue, because their TV is always on and I always wanted it off.  I still do most of the time.  But after reflecting on this issue deeply over the past year and a half (ever since I have had 2 kiddos to deal with), I have come to realize that the TV can actually help protect my relationship with the kids because when I HAVE to do something like make lunch or dinner and they will NOT leave me alone and are whining and crying (and my 18 month old will not go on my back unfortunately - believe me, I know about babywearing, my son was constantly on my back until he was 21 months old), I realize it is better for them to watch Baby Einstein or I Love Rockets than to have them melting on the kitchen floor until I snap at them.  I have tried audiobooks, several out of the library and also Madeline and Olivia and I have Curious George on hold.

 

I already go outside quite frequently.  Today was the first day w/ snow we could play in.  But that was a flop.  They were both whiny and crying the whole time, and I had them SUPER bundled up.

 

My son hates going on hikes now.  Sometimes I will make him, other times I wait for Daddy to come home and just go w/ my daughter.

 

Anyway, we were all going to go out to a movie tonight, but after this thread I am having doubts about taking the 18 month old, so maybe I will keep her with me and let Daddy and son go.

 

Thanks for any comments still.

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#12 of 20 Old 01-02-2012, 06:20 PM
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I think there's a significant difference between expecting TV to be educational and using it to amuse your kids for a short time while you tend to another, necessary task.  Its a tool, and it was originally intended to amuse people for short periods of time. 

 

We like Dinosaur Train and the Backyardigans.  Sometimes my 4yo will go for Blues Clues.  Since we haven't bought into the idea that TV is educational, we don't necessarily look for educational shows.  Sometimes my kids watch Avatar, or Phineas and Ferb.  I wish they liked the Muppets as much as I do.  We don't actually watch shows on TV - we stream them from Netflix. 

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#13 of 20 Old 01-03-2012, 10:15 AM
 
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I wanted to say that I know where OP is coming from. It can be hard. So I do understand.

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#14 of 20 Old 01-03-2012, 11:31 AM
 
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Mine loved Dragon Tales on PBS when we still had a tv. We've watched a few Little Bear, and Franklin as well and they liked both.


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#15 of 20 Old 01-03-2012, 12:28 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stik View Post

I think there's a significant difference between expecting TV to be educational and using it to amuse your kids for a short time while you tend to another, necessary task.  Its a tool, and it was originally intended to amuse people for short periods of time. 

 

We like Dinosaur Train and the Backyardigans.  Sometimes my 4yo will go for Blues Clues.  Since we haven't bought into the idea that TV is educational, we don't necessarily look for educational shows.  Sometimes my kids watch Avatar, or Phineas and Ferb.  I wish they liked the Muppets as much as I do.  We don't actually watch shows on TV - we stream them from Netflix. 




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My kids have learned a few things as a result of watching tv, but it hasn't been from "educational" tv, it's always been from the conversations we've had about what they watched.  If I let them watch something with a good story, like Avatar, we end up having discussions about the motivations of the different characters, but if I let them watch something "educational" they tend to just go into zombie mode.  I also prefer Netflix or DVD's over television (expecially the kid channels) since I don't like them spending so much time watching commercials.

 

I like the original Muppet show too, that was just pure genius!

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#16 of 20 Old 01-03-2012, 01:54 PM
 
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A show that we can find in our library and that DS loves is Pocoyo.  It's not as visually stimulating as most shows because there is no scenery in the show - everything takes place against a white background.  He still finds it exciting, but it was the first CGI show he'd tolerate because of overstimulation.  Nick Jr. runs it every morning, or you can see if you can find the DVDs.  Each "episode" is only 7 minutes long, so 2-3 episodes might get lunch made, and then you can turn it off without them freaking out that it's the middle of the show. 

 

But DS' favorite is Signing Time.  Not sure if you're interested in doing sign language with your littles though.  We have the DVDs, but our library also carries them.  He loves to sing and dance along with the show, and while he doesn't really sign much himself, he definitely understands sign (I sign).  I know it runs sometimes on one of our PBS channels, but I rarely catch it. 


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#17 of 20 Old 01-03-2012, 03:20 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Emilie2 View Post

I LOVE LOVE LOVE zoboomafoo or the kraft brothers on PBS.  It is very educational and fun and about animals.  I would get the videos or it's on PBS a lot.

PBS is pretty good all around and i think most stations play cartoons in the morning.

http://pbskids.org/

at 4 i used to put my son on my lap and play computer games with him from pbs.



It's the Kratt Brothers. They are still on PBS. Their current show is Wild Kratts. I find it both interesting and educational. The brothers have degrees in zoology and biology and have been doing shows about animals for a long time. Wild Kratts has live action at the beginning and end but the main part of the show is animated. It's just cool. There's a story to the animated part so it isn't just exposition. 

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#18 of 20 Old 01-05-2012, 03:07 PM
 
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Like many of the other subforum members, my family doesn't watch TV at all.  Our family is on the extreme end in that we don't even do any movies or videos or anything.

 

That said, I do sympathize with the OP.  SO, if I were in the OP's shoes, this is what I'd do.  I would go for the Weather Channel.   They're short segments, scientific, interesting and visually appealing to young children without hype. Plus, it has the added bonus of being interesting to the adult as well.

 

So in my opinion, if I were going to expose my child to small bursts of TV, it would be the Weather Channel only, NOT the kids shows (even the so-called educational ones).

 

Edited to add:  Okay, I was not totally honest.  A couple months ago, we were out somewhere, and there was a television tuned to an ESPN broadcast of a championship trick shot competition in billiards.  You know, not just regular billiards, but the kind of contest where the players have to do impossible fancy shots.   (Kind of like this: http://www.youtube.com/topic/bDUx5xNqHsU/mike-massey ) I did let my 7 year old dd watch that because it was REALLY cool, plus I figure that it's all physics.  :D

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#19 of 20 Old 01-05-2012, 03:28 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emilysmama View Post

Like many of the other subforum members, my family doesn't watch TV.  Our family is on the extreme end in that we don't even do any movies or videos or anything.

 

That said, I do sympathize with the OP.  SO, if I were in the OP's shoes, this is what I'd do.  I would go for the Weather Channel.   They're short segments, scientific, interesting and visually appealing to young children without hype. Plus, it has the added bonus of being interesting to the adult as well.

 

But in my opinion, if I were going to expose my child to small bursts of TV, it would be the Weather Channel only, NOT the kids shows (even the so-called educational ones).



We don't have TV only DVDs. BUT if we did this is a good idea.

 

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#20 of 20 Old 01-05-2012, 06:47 PM
 
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We don't have TV programming, we just do live streaming off Netflix. DS is four and he likes Fishtronaut, Go Diego Go, Wonder Pets, Team Umizoomi, Kipper, Caillou, and some of the National Geographic programming. We didn't do any TV at all until he was about two and a half, and I try to keep it pretty sparing. But as a single mom, it's pretty much my main method of doing things like, say, showering.


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