No screen time before 2YO

This is a late night post and if I’m writing incoherently, do pardon me. But I feel I need to pen these thoughts down before it disappear from my mind and these are lessons I need to remind myself.

This article prompted my writing.

Faith has been barred from watching Hi-5 for about a month now. If you can recall, I shared about how TV programmes such as Hi-5 can be such a saviour when it comes to giving me a breather because the little one could sit on the sofa by herself while watching it.

Well, I want to take back my words.

Because I fear I may be doing more damage to her by making life a little better for myself.

During that period, the first thing when Faith woke up is to ask to watch Hi-5. She did it in an adorable way and the first few times, I found it cute but when the frequency of those requests increased, it raised an alarm.

I observed what she was doing when the show was on.

I didn’t like what I saw.

Faith was no longer dancing to the songs like before. She just sat on the sofa, stared at the screen and her facial expression was blank. There was very little interaction with what was shown and that disturbed me.

What is going on in her brain?

There are quite a few articles in the internet which state the dangers of exposing young children to electronic devices and personally I subscribe to that.

So I got Faith to go cold turkey on Hi-5.

She showed her displeasure by throwing tantrums of course and that persisted for a few days. By the fourth day, I think she knew her mother meant business and did it more mildly. At the end of the first week, there were no tantrums and fewer requests for the show.

Now, she did not ask for it anymore.

*However, there are some special occasion when we allow her to watch the TV programme with us. Other than that, the TV is mostly switched off. The adults got updated with news from the newspaper or the internet. ;p

In our family, we do not believe in using the mobile phone to engage her. To us, the device only distracts her from the chance of understanding more about the environment she is in. When we dish out the device during mealtimes for example, we not only deprive her of using her senses to savour the food and learning about communal eating, we also cause her to focus on the device rather than food. Bad eating habits result.

Technology has its place in learning and I suspect Faith could know more words through using some apps and be more IT savvy. But that can wait.

Meanwhile, there are changes my hubs and I need to make. We need to learn to use less of those devices in front of her and to really pay attention to the little one because a lot of times, we may be physically present but well, we really are not and young children can sense it easily.

They are really that intelligent, you know?