The Associated Press reports: President Barack Obama says there’s one sure thing parents can do to help their kids learn, regardless of financial means: Forbid them from watching television on school nights.
Of his own daughters, Malia, 11, and Sasha, 8, Obama told Essence magazine: “The girls don’t watch TV during the week. Period.”
I have to say that seems a little bit harsh. My kids, and I’m sure President Obama’s kids, work very hard at school. They are gone for eight hours and deserve a little down time when they come home.
How would you as an adult feel if you walked in a from an eight-hour work day and someone made you sit down and immediately work another hour. That would stink.
When adults come home we want to unwind and so do kids. It would be great if they always wanted to go and back and play when they walked in the door, but often they just want to sit in front of the TV and turn off their pounding little brains.
I have no problem with my kids coming home and watching a couple of shows. They eat a treat. And after about an hour they start their homework. Eat dinner. Bathe and read and then go to bed.
I just think it’s about moderation– in all things. A little TV to unwind is not a bad thing. Hours upon hours of TV (especially in a kid’s bedroom is a bad thing.)
A brownie after dinner is not bad – a plate of brownies is bad.
Self-control people. There are all these articles now that show that self-control is more important in determining a child’s academic success than even IQ. So we need to help them develop self discipline as well as other skills. They need to practice the self discipline.
When you limit something too much then they go in the opposite direction when they have the freedom to choose.
When those poor little girls go off to college, they’re not going to leave the common room for hours trying to catch up on TV.
Moderation – that’s the key.
What do you think: Should the Obama girls get a little down time with the TV when they get home from school? What about your kids? How much is the right amount?
My friend and fellow blogger Maureen Downey addressed this on Get Schooled earlier. She’s on board with the President’s No TV policy. Check out her views and the comments.
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