Wednesday, 24 October 2012

screen time

 How do u feel about screen time?

 Too much ?

 Too little?

 Do you monitor how long and what your kids watch?

Its not an issue i,d have given much thought to until the last couple of years.The years in which i have discoverer Waldorf as a way of living and learning.
In a Waldorf school class room you would be highly unlikely to See a t.v or computer screen.

So where does this leave a Waldorf inspired  home schooling mum of five?

A phrase I've herd many a time is " I am guilty of using screens as baby sitters".  I'd have to disagree with this. I don't think i do. yes its easier to get on with things around the house if the little ones are glued to screens but its not really a choice of mummy or the screen . I'm often in earshot if not in the same room to answer questions that arise.Questions that often come about from watching comedy, documentary, soaps and cartoons .
Question after question would have you believe that screens are an educational tool.These screens transport my little ones to other cities, countries, planets, circumstances, it allows them to explore and gain knowledge without leaving the safety of the home.It brings about emotions as they watch there favorite characters living out their script written lives.

These screens allow my daughters to Skype other home educated children and to form amazing friendships . To keep up to date with media stories and play games.To research information for projects and anything else that grabs their attention.

But just lately my "plugged in" kids  are driving me crazy. Well actually i need to rephrase that, the kids them self are not driving me crazy.Its more that I'm driving myself crazy!

After all its me that has allowed them to become the way they are , so reliant on screens.

We have a rule in our home that between Monday and Friday there is no screen time between the hours of 9am and 3pm.

But ...

Like most rules in our home , the little ones are great at bending them ( well i am too)
The computers end up being switched on to print of some information , or a picture or some such thing for our "school" work and before you know it someone is checking there Facebook wall.

I'm a sucker for giving in to the kids for a quiet life.....

Iv been reading up on this subject and apparently guidelines suggest a child should be in front of a screen for no more than two hours a day.

My lot well surpass this!!!!

They have a t.v. and computer in the lounge and in the bedroom .Our bedroom harbours the third t.v. set and then there's the laptop, the Wii and their phones... (Jasmine has a DS too but i cant remember the last time i actually saw hr play on it.)

I feel pangs of guilt .I'm just as addicted as they are , they are mirroring my actions.
I adore Facebook and have made some fabulous friends , mostly other mothers home educating there children.I no longer feel isolated when i know that they are just a few clicks away.
I rarely miss an opportunity to share our day , help or advice or ask others advice .I also spend hours each night, whilst up nursing the baby , researching for our home ed days and finding new projects and fun crafts.

In my defence I'm not in to TV in a big way.Paul however is.He has a large number of programs he watches .making sure to record any conflicting shows so as not  miss anything.I think if it was not for Paul's love of the box I would be totally happy to get rid of the T.Vs.

If the T.V s on even i find myself watching what is more often than not some rubbish, or worse still i find the kids mindlessly sitting watching something they only watched yesterday ( why are kids programs repeated over and over again?)

A major drawback of TV has to be the adverts.Kids are bombarded with them daily.The coolest toy (usually plastic junk) the newest food (usually unhealthy rubbish).
Then of course mums a mean person for not allowing any of the crap in the house !

And of course there's the frequent arguments, Whos turn is it to use the computer next? when can we watch my program ? Why cant i stay up later to watch this program ?.... it goes on ....

I don't know where this post is going , but i do feel as though  some changes are needed.

Id be interested in your opinions on the subject too ........

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