Sunday, January 10, 2010

Book Review: Kids and TV

Into the Minds of Babes: How Screen Time Affects Children from Birth to Age Five Into the Minds of Babes: How Screen Time Affects Children from Birth to Age Five by Lisa Guernsey

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This is an informative, interesting book about a subject that I think about a lot--young children and the benefits/drawbacks of TV viewership for them. The author addresses many good points on this topic and her research and resources are good. Her overall findings from delving into numerous studies are that the less TV the better, while also recognizing that good-quality children's programs can have definite benefits for the kids who watch them. My only problem with the book was how she went into too much detail about many of the studies she researched, citing the details of how they were conducted and the methodology behind them. I don't think it was necessary to include all of that. Otherwise, it's a very helpful book, with some great resources in the back too.

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Lisa K said...

So what was her opinion on the average amount of TV a child should watch throughout the day?

Donna said...

Overall she seems to stand by the American Academy of Pediatrics recommendation: no TV for kids under 2, and no more than two hours a day for kids over 2. Her kids watch about an hour a day, sometimes more on Saturdays or when they watch a movie. After doing all the research, she doesn't think letting kids watch TV is a bad thing, it's just about doing it responsibly, which I agree with too.

rachel said...

I agree with you as well Donna. I thought about adding it to my book list, but am not to hip on all the research detail.

Sarah Laurence said...

I like that the book addresses both the strengths and weaknesses of TV. I was very good about avoiding screen time with one child, but when I was pregnant and very nauseous and then nursing a newborn, I needed the TV to survive. I think parents need TV as a babysitter to maintain their sanity, but anything else has to be better for a child’s development. We limited our kids to 1 hour of screen time a day (TV or computer) but let that slide on weekends.