Do you worry about how the media will shape your kids? TV can impact a child's social and intellectual development. Violence and inappropriate scenes on TV can have a negative influence- but how can you stop it? Many try the route of censorship through the government, which can be helpful- but not immediate.
One of the BEST ways to protect your kids from TV's negative influence is by the boundaries you set at home and how you model it. This method is quicker and can be more aligned with your family's personal value and moral system. What is good for some might not be okay for others, so we can't rely on everyone to agree when going the censorship route.
Frieda Lang gives a great analogy to help us think about how to set boundaries for kid's TV watching. She equates it to a "TV diet". When you think about nutrition, most parents would agree that it is not ok to allow your kids to eat as much of any food they want whenever they want. This would not be teaching healthy nutritional boundaries and could end in some negative health issues and bad eating habits long term.
Why should it be any different with TV? As parents we can teach our kids a good TV diet by not allowing them to watch things beyond their age range and to watch all the TV they want at any time they want. A lack of TV boundaries would be an unhealthy TV diet.
Make sure you are aware of what your kids see you doing. If you have a bad "TV diet", your kids are likely to follow in your footsteps. They are watching you to show them what to do!
Check in all week as we break down specific ways to teach your kids a healthy "TV diet". Thanks for reading!
Source: Parent Group Counseling by Frieda A Lang Ed. D.
Written by Teri Claassen MSW, LCSW, LCAC
Teri Claassen MSW, LCSW, LCAC is a licensed therapist at Imagine Hope Counseling Group. Teri enjoys doing marriage counseling, individual counseling, couples and relationship counseling. Teri also does family counseling, child counseling, and adolescent counseling. Imagine Hope serves the Indianapolis area, including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Fishers, Noblesville, Zionsville, and Westfield.