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Archive for February 10th, 2014

kids tv

 

Adapted from the poem by Bruce Lansky in My Dog Ate My Homework, published by Meadowbrook Press.

Summary: A child debates watching TV with his parents.

Presentation Suggestions: Read or perform the poem with your friends. Act out the different lines while you read them.

Props: A TV would be a great prop but if one is not available the poem can be performed without it.

Delivery: The lines of the poem should be read with poetic rhythm but don’t worry too much about this. For more information on poetic rhythm and how to perform poetry, please read the Performing Poetry section of our site.

 

Characters:     Child     Mom     Dad

Turn Off the TV!

Child:

My father gets quite mad at me;         
my mother gets upset–         
when they catch me watching         
our new television set.               
My father yells:           

Dad (yelling):

Turn that thing off!           

Child:

Mom says:           

Mom:

It’s time to study.           

Child:

I’d rather watch my favorite TV show         
with my best buddy.               
I sneak down after homework         
and turn the set on low.         
But when she sees me watching it,         
my mother yells out:               

Mom (yelling):

No!           

Child:

Dad says:           

Dad:

If you don’t turn it off,         
I’ll hang it from a tree!               

Child:

I rather doubt he’ll do it,         
’cause he watches more than me.               
He watches sports all weekend,         
and weekday evenings too,         
while munching chips and pretzels–         
the room looks like a zoo.         
So if he ever got the nerve         
to hang it from a tree,         
he’d spend a lot of time up there–         
watching it with me.               

THE END!

© 1996 by Bruce Lansky. Adapted from the poem “Turn Off the TV” from My Dog Ate My Homework, published by Meadowbrook Press. This classroom theater play version of “Turn Off the TV” is © 1999 by Meadowbrook Press.

 

Permission is given for individual school classes to perform this play and to make as many copies of the play as are needed for the students’ use. All other reproduction and performance is prohibited under penalty of law. For use of this play outside individual classes, please contact info@meadowbrookpress.com for permission.

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kids tv

kids tv

 

                                      

 

  Most kids plug into the world of television long before they enter school.

  • two-thirds of infants and toddlers watch a screen an average of 2 hours a day
  • kids under age 6 watch an average of about 2 hours of screen media a day, primarily TV and videos or DVDs
  • kids and teens 8 to 18 years spend nearly 4 hours a day in front of a TV screen and almost 2 additional hours on the computer (outside of schoolwork) and playing video games

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends that kids under 2 years old not watch any TV and that those older than 2 watch no more than 1 to 2 hours a day of quality programming.

The first 2 years of life are considered a critical time for brain development. TV and other electronic media can get in the way of exploring, playing, and interacting with parents and others, which encourages learning and healthy physical and social development.

As kids get older, too much screen time can interfere with activities such as being physically active, reading, doing homework, playing with friends, and spending time with family.

Of course, TV in moderation can be a good thing: Preschoolers can get help learning the alphabet on public television, grade schoolers can learn about wildlife on nature shows, and parents can keep up with current events on the evening news. No doubt about it — TV can be an excellent educator and entertainer.

But despite its advantages, too much television can be detrimental:

  • Children who consistently spend more than 4 hours per day watching TV are more likely to be overweight.
  • Kids who view violent acts are more likely to show aggressive behavior but also fear that the world is scary and that something bad will happen to them.
  • TV characters often depict risky behaviors, such as smoking and drinking, and also reinforce gender-role and racial stereotypes.

Children’s advocates are divided when it comes to solutions. Although many urge for more hours per week of educational programming, others assert that zero TV is the best solution. And some say it’s better for parents to control the use of TV and to teach kids that it’s for occasional entertainment, not for constant escapism.

That’s why it’s so important for you to monitor the content of TV programming and set viewing limits to ensure that your kids don’t spend too much time parked in front of the TV

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