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How to handle your child’s TV time

Tired of telling your children to stop being couch potatoes? 
If you have realized that you cannot stop your children from watching TV, here are tips that at least help you to get the best out of the idiot box. 

  • Select the programmes your children watch

    Choose the programmes your children should watch, of course keeping in mind their likes and dislikes. As far as possible, avoid the overdose of sex and violence that is integral to many TV programmes. It adversely affects impressionable minds. You should be able to clearly underline the programmes not meant for children, at least in the initial years. This task is not easy, but one can make a dent when the children are in their formative years.
  • Watch with them 

    Let TV time be family time. While answering your children’s queries about television, try to understand their thinking processes.  Not only will that establish your rapport with your children, but it will mean quality time that will be cherished throughout life.
  • Arouse their curiosity

    Ask them questions related to their favorite programmes. TV can be a learning experience if TV watching is made interactive by nature. For instance, while watching a science quiz/mythological serial/chat show, ask them to relate to their classroom experiences. 
  • TV time should never be overlapped with meals

    Doctors often warn against watching television during dinnertime. Watching TV while eating can cause severe and chronic indigestion. It can also lead to obesity as children sit glued to the TV set. Moreover, they do not enjoy food while concentrating on their favorite programmes. They have to be taught to ration their TV viewing. Otherwise, they will never enjoy other forms of entertainment like reading, outdoor games and sports, swimming and various performing arts. Children have to be consciously introduced to these avenues.
  • Discourage late night television viewing

    Children, especially the school-going kind, should never be allowed to watch TV after ten’ o’clock in the night. Not only does it affect the eyesight, but it also disturbs the morning routine on the next day. Inculcate the `early-to-bed’ `early to rise’ habit in your little ones.

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