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TV Can Improve Your Kid's Schoolwork, Says Best Study Ever
June 24, 2013 at 12:31 PM

**Interesting article that can be applied to the homeschooled student as well.**

TV Can Improve Your Kid's Schoolwork, Says Best Study Ever

by Julie Ryan Evans 

boy watching tvYou know how most studies that come out cause massive amounts of parental guilt? Too much sugar, too little exercise, not enough breast milk, not enough hours spent studying -- it seems every day we get news of how we're harming or not doing enough to help our kids. So that's why I jumped for joy when I read a new study that says children who watch more television do better in school than their peers who watch less.

Can I get a hallelujah? Especially this summer, when my mommy guilt runs high over all the screen time. It contradicts most every other study we've seen, but according to the Daily Mail, the study out of the University of London found that kids who watch three or more hours of TV a day were three months ahead of those who watch an hour or less.

Dr. Alice Sullivan, who may be my favorite doctor ever, said that the "educational value of children's television has been underestimated." This study gets better too. It found that rigid rules -- like regular bed and meal times -- aren't as significant as we tend to think when it comes to our children's school performance either. Perhaps not so encouraging for many, however, is the overall finding that more than anything, social class and a parent's education are the most significant things that determine how well children will do in school.

Regardless, it's certainly not just a license to stick your kid in front of the TV all day and throw the rules out the window. It is just one study, and there are plenty of other reasons besides schoolwork that it's not good for them to be spending endless hours in front of the TV, including the need for physical activity. However, what I think it does do is give us a little bit more of a license to relax the rules once in awhile. So what if our kids watch a half day of TV on one of these lazy, rainy summer days. So what if we let them stay up late once in awhile to watch a baseball game. As long as we love them and try to do our best, they're probably going to turn out okay.

What do you make of this study?

Replies

  • Bleacheddecay
    June 24, 2013 at 1:01 PM

    I've always felt that TV could be good or bad depending. I've also always felt that restricting something like TV can cause an addictive effect later on as it did for me because TV was against our religion. Later TV became my one friend and soother.

    Meanwhile my husband was allowed to watch as much as he could with school, yard work and church. He could care less about TV today.

    I do think content is important. When they are young only certain shows and channels should be allowed. As they grow you can watch more questionable or grown up shows WITH them and explain why you like them or why you don't. How they fit your family values or not. How "realistic" they really are to real life and so on.


  • craftyzenmom
    June 24, 2013 at 1:36 PM

    That kid in the picture looks really little compared to big mean Darth Sidious....not sure hours of inappropriate tv is good for any age kids. I tend to think tv is valuable when it is used as a source of more than just shock value and mind candy.... Not to say there's not a place for the occasional brain drain show.

  • jen2150
    by jen2150
    June 24, 2013 at 2:20 PM
    I have always felt it was more what you watched than how much. My sons and I stayed up late watching sky wire live. It was awesome. We had a great time. We even learned a few things. Watching TV has really inspired my boys in so many ways. There are so many more cool things on TV than when I was a kid.
  • mommy4lyf
    June 24, 2013 at 2:35 PM
    Too much of everything is not good.
  • kirbymom
    June 24, 2013 at 2:37 PM
    Okay. Junk tv is NOT good for anyone least of all children. AND structured time IS a value to children and parents alike, unless parents don't care any longer who, how or what their children do anymore. This is how I feel about anything we do...all thuings in moderation. Too many hours of tv,even if it's all positive still isn't going to be good for your brain xor your visual cortex. Not enough of that good ole vitamin D from the sun iisn't good either. I'm sorry. I just can't be happy that some study is now saying it is great for kids to watch more tv than not.
  • bluerooffarm
    June 24, 2013 at 2:45 PM

     How exactly are they determining "three months ahead?"  It seems to me that they MIGHT be using ability to "sit still for hours of classes" as being "ahead".  Also correlation does not mean causation.  I highly doubt that the study actually says that tv watching MAKES the children "ahead."  It just may mean that the children that watch all of that tv are more often the higher socio-economic citizens that have time to watch that much television.  IE not have as many chores, work and have the video games/ cable television required for extensive tv watching. 

    I agree with the others: moderation.

  • FootballFan12
    June 24, 2013 at 2:58 PM

    I think certain programming can be educational and helpful. However just planting a child in front of a television with the purpose of keeping them entertained is definitely not.

  • kmath
    by kmath
    June 24, 2013 at 4:18 PM

    I agree with moderation, I also agree that the content is what is helpful, not just mindless tv time.  Educational shows are ok, but not all day every day. 

  • Bookoholic
    June 24, 2013 at 4:22 PM
    I was also allowed as much tv as I wanted as a kid and really don't care if I have it or not, ds has the same rules, most of the time though he is playing outside.


    Quoting Bleacheddecay:

    I've always felt that TV could be good or bad depending. I've also always felt that restricting something like TV can cause an addictive effect later on as it did for me because TV was against our religion. Later TV became my one friend and soother.

    Meanwhile my husband was allowed to watch as much as he could with school, yard work and church. He could care less about TV today.

    I do think content is important. When they are young only certain shows and channels should be allowed. As they grow you can watch more questionable or grown up shows WITH them and explain why you like them or why you don't. How they fit your family values or not. How "realistic" they really are to real life and so on.



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