A US study has revealed that Toddlers exposed to too much TV, were at risk of developing aggressive behaviour.

The study published in the Archives of Paediatrics and Adolescent Medicine; found that a combination of preschoolers watching inappropriate content and the television viewing habits of the entire family could have an impact on your child’s development.

Excessive amount of Television viewing could mean irregular bedtimes leading to lack of sleep, less time outside or creative interaction which may result in the release of pent-up aggression.

Psychologist Dr Michael Carr-Gregg (who I got the pleasure to meet last week at the Power of Play Conference) said the latest study revealed the importance of play and sleep in a child’s development and learning. He say’s the problem with plonking the kids down in front of the TV is it doesn’t excite their imagination.

Springfree’s Tanya Munro (mother of two boys 9 and 7) found a surprising link to TV viewing and behaviour in her children recently.

“My children’s TV viewing started impacting other areas of their behaviour. My boys are huge fans of Ben 10 and Bakugan and providing they do all their chores in the morning we were letting them watch for 15 mins before school each day. I soon noticed they were becoming much more aggressive and quick to react, they were getting into disagreements at school and even their drawings had pictures of fighting and death which horrified their teachers.

Over the last few weeks I’ve tested limiting their TV viewing to non- aggressive programs, and have completely banned their use of X-box and Nintendo. The boys have been forced to go outside and play the last few weeks, which has not only stemmed their imaginative play, but their swimming teachers have noticed fitness improvement and they’re even getting along better. I know there’s a tendancy to use television as a babysitter, and I’ve been guilty of this as well. But the benefits I’ve seen in my children in just a few weeks has shown me there’s no turning back. We’ll now be limiting video games to 1 hour a week, and the outdoor play is definitely staying on the agenda. It’s just the better choice for us.”

Many Springfree parents tell us of how the Springfree Trampoline is a great tool for getting the kids to jump out their ‘Sillies’. Not to mention the benefits of outdoor interactive physical play which experts agree is vital.

How do you monitor your child’s viewing habits to avoid the Tantrums?


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