Many people who visit us are in shock that we don’t own a TV. That’s right, no TV in the house. No cable. Nada. This is actually one of the decisions which we made upon moving into this house one year ago which I am super proud of.
Why did we make this choice?
1. Screens are addictive. The more the kids watch, the more they want to watch. It makes my kids zombies.
2. For a child, a book cannot compete with television or video games. All the glitz and animation on the screen make the book look pale and boring in comparison. Take away the TV and watch that book become ultra attractive.
3. TV commercials targeting my kids make me so angry that just for that I refuse to bring a TV into our lives. My kids are not your money machines to be manipulated into wanting products they don’t need. Pick on someone else’s child. That was meant for the advertisers out there, if it wasn’t clear.
Anyways, so visitors ask us what do the kids do when they are home if there is no TV. So, I decided to share some pictures from the last few days.
I don’t play chess. I admit. But Guy does. And so do our 3 older kids. And you know what? They love it. Chess is exciting for them. I observe them from the sidelines and marvel at their interest in this game. Even the 2 year old knows the name of all of the pieces.
And when friends and family come over?
Its chess again.
And when chess is done?
Other board games, guitar, arts and crafts, word puzzles, sports. You know, old school.
And in the evenings, what happens when there is no TV to watch?
We split up into rooms and read.
Because, when there is no TV around and no video games (besides chess on the computer), all of the sudden books are oh so attractive. And that’s the whole point.
We are not against technology. Oh, no. We marvel at the wonders of technology, the internet, gadgets, etc. As a parent, I feel that my child’s time is better spent in reading and connecting to real people instead of machines. I also feel that I am actually giving the kids their childhood by having no television because their exposure to inappropriate material is delayed. This is one blessed delay, in my view.
So, will our children be prepared for the future if we keep it old fashioned in our house? Who knows Times are changing so quickly that no one really knows how to prepare a child for what’s coming. I know one thing for sure: I wish I would have spent my childhood reading more books and connecting to family members via family games. That would have been really nice. So, I do it with my kids.
Parenting is a gamble. We all do our best in the hopes of getting it right. Needless to say, there is no right. There is just where our hearts lead us as parents. Follow your hearts, Parents. Everything else will fall into place accordingly.