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Preschoolers & Kindergartners What a fun time in life! Time to learn 123's and ABC's. At the same time, they're leaving that babyhood we'll miss so much!

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Old 09-02-2002, 02:10 PM
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Handeling Kids Video Games & TV time

My oldest son recently got a Playstation 2 for his birthday. He loves it and could easily spend all day in front of the TV playing. He is 6 years old and just started kindergarten. What kind of limits does everyone put on their childrens TV and Video Game time? How much is a fair amount of time to play games and watch TV each day?
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Old 09-07-2002, 08:21 PM
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Hi JK!

My son is nearly 13 now, but he has limits...he has a tv in his room, but can only watch 1 hr of it alone...after that, he must watch tv with us, if it's on at all.... we often don't even have the tv on in the evening...we do other things like board games or biking, walking, etc.

At 6 yrs only, your son is awfully young, IMHO, to have a video game player...my son never even PLAYED one till he was about 8, & certainly never had his own till this year..he bought it with his own money, so your son is very lucky.

Our son doesn't play the videos every day...there is school work which comes first, he's involved in Scouts, a bowling league, archery....but even if he weren't, he'd be allowed 1 hr. a day...that's enough, because as you say...it is addictive

As parents, we can't just plunk our kids down in front of the tv to babysit...we have to spend time with them..& at such a young age, kids should be playing with other kids or the parents...

YOU are the parent, & YOU have to set the rules, but most importantly, STICK to them!! Our son recently lost his computer privileges for 1 1/2 months, because he wouldn't shut down when told...he was becoming obsessed with a game site...I tell you, he is a much nicer person now...& we are ALL getting along much better..he still asks to have it back, but we are sticking to our guns...he can use it for school but that's it for now...

I guess, bottom line, at age 6, my son watched very little tv, & no video games at all because he was too busy being a kid...playing with toys, his friends, doing crafts, going for walks, biking, the playground...

I hope I've not bored or angered you, but I feel very strongly about allowing kids to sit in front of the "boob tube" too much...it frys the brain.....

Hugs...Jacquie
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Old 09-08-2002, 03:19 AM
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My dd knows her limits on viedeo games. She is not allowed to play them during the week if there is school. She can play on weekends but MUSY take breaks away from it as well.

As for tv, that is always on in my house but she can be so into painting, coloring etc.. that she forgets it is on. The TV is always off when she is reading. She enjoys that now too!.
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Old 09-08-2002, 04:38 AM
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I have 5 boys ages 7, 11, 13, 14 adn 15. They each get 1 hour of play station a day. It's hard to keep track so it may be a few minutes longer or a few minutes shorter but that's how we do it. During the summer months we have our satelite turned off so television isn't an issue in the summer. We camp a lot and the kids are always outside and busy. I think television would make them couch potatoes in the summer. It will be turned on soon and we'll have television again starting in October. I'm not sure how we'll work it. We may not have it on until after homework is done or we may do an hour each for it too. I'm not sure. The kids actually read, played board games, leggos, etc. It was good.

Good luck in setting boundaries for your little guy. He may not like having boundaries but he's needs them.
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Old 09-08-2002, 05:17 AM
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I am in the same boat as you~ My son just started kindergarden....and just turned 5. For his bday, my father got him a ps2. GRrrrr....all he wants to do is play it as well, but we set up as system and now he knows what he has to do first. He is allowed 20 minutes 2 X a day to play. I made him a chart that clearly outlines that he has to pick up his room from the morning or put away toys first. If he does that, he can play. We bought a timer (together) and we set it to the correct time. There is another spot on the sticker chart as well. IF he wants to play ps again, he has to complete 3-4 of the kindergarden worksheets or practice writing his name or cutting or coloring...a writing activity. He usually becomes so distracted by the writing part that he forgets about the ps game. Same with tv. Although we don't have a chart for that, he knows that once all of his things are put away, he can watch a little tv (That gets old quick as well). Good luck! Now I have to deal with my 3 yr old wanting to play as well.....
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Old 09-08-2002, 05:55 AM
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Computer games

Ok here's my opinion! All the posts so far have several similar basic threads. Set an age appropriate limit - watch the child's behavior - make sure they're involved in other physical and educational activities as well. I agree with all of these.

I'd also suggest not making a big issue out of this especially when the child is older. You know how it is when someone tells you 'you can't' - you want to do it all the more. I think at all ages you just need to say 'okay that's enough' or 'at such and such a time we're going to do ...'. Don't dwell on the limit part.

If the older ones read, by all means get the game books/magazines so they can read them. Reading is reading!

My DS who grew up on computer games is at college going after a computer engineering or computer science degree. I'm sure he'll do just fine and so will your children! It might just spark that passion in them that people are always talking about. You know find something your in love with and make a living at it!
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Old 09-08-2002, 09:09 AM
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the Canadian Pediatric Society recommends that children not participate in anymore than one hour of sit-down activities (computer, television, video games, etc) when younger then only 2 hours as they get older. I can't remember what the ages were. up to five or six I think for one hour then 2 hours up to 12.

I agree with the previous posts. Personally I don't think children should spend more than one hour doing these types of things even as they get older. I would even restrict it to 1/2 hour each for siblings (2-3) as they will all be sitting there together being inactive even if they aren't the ones playing. A five year old? I would probably say only 20 minutes of video games because I would be sure he will also want to watch tv or play on the computer during the day.

It's nice to see that other parents are aware of restricited these types of activities. I have seen many parents who let their children play all day. They figure it gets them out of their hair. Personally, I think that is not right.

Good luck! and play along with him!

Colleen
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Old 09-08-2002, 12:14 PM
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Colleen,

Do you have any children? Are you familliar with the games that are available out there? I honestly think that it depends on what the child is playing. Some of the games look like just folly, but it also introduces critical thinking and familliarizes children with computers/video/electronics as well as science and math. I know it sounds rediculous but this type of exposure allows different parts of the brain to be utilized. I do not allow violent games...no shooting, language, etc. We do not subscribe to cable or satallite. Usually, the tv they watch are things from the library...even then, it is rare that they are sitting down like bumps on a log or having the tv on altogether. One just has to be a responsable person and see that if your child is turning into a zombie, something is wrong! If your child is nasty, turn it off, fighting with siblings....etc. But simply blaming video games (0r computer...because it can also be just as mezmorizing) or tv is not the correct thing to do. Someone surely has to turn it on.
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Old 09-08-2002, 01:31 PM
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Musicmom,
Perhaps you didn't read my post. I don't have a problem with children playing video games (I do have a son and he does play some). My beef is that I have personally seen many parents use the games/tv/computer as babysitters. In a society that is increasingly getting more obese I am sure you can understand that it is unhealthy for children to sit at these activities for long periods of time. Kids are learning at young ages to spend hours sitting watching tv, playing games, etc. All I am saying is that parents are responsible to encourage other activities and to monitor the time spent doing these activities.
Colleen
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Old 09-08-2002, 05:58 PM
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Moderation, is the key to all living. whether we are eating, drinking, playing video games, computering, exercising....I think we all know the limits, we just have to live by them.

Still striving for the best!

janet
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