The Writing Mamas Daily Blog

Each day on the Writing Mamas Daily Blog, a different member will write about mothering.

If you're a mom then you've said these words, you've made these observations and you've lived these situations - 24/7.

And for that, you are a goddess.

Thursday, April 26, 2007


TV-Turnoff Week

My 7-year old son obsesses over television. When can he watch it? For how long? Can he have the cereal that looks like chocolate donuts? Please Mom, the commercial says the cereal is part of a nutritional breakfast.

I’m enjoying National TV-Turnoff Week. My family participated last year and is doing so again now. Numerous studies conclude that children are watching more and more TV and the impacts are negative. Children who watch lots of television are more obese, study less and are more likely to engage in violence than children who watch a little television. The cutoff between a lot and a little seems to be about 10 hours a week.

During last year’s TV-Turnoff Week, my family was more physically active. We went for more walks than usual and talked to neighbors. We planted flowers in the border of our front yard. We played card games and board games. Bottom line, we spent more time together talking and really enjoying each others’ company.

My son spent a couple of hours one morning creating a chart of his favorite shows. He wrote the start times of shows across the top of a page, and the days of the week down the left side. Then he slotted the shows he wanted to watch. What a great activity for a 6-year old. He needed to understand time, days of the week and how to organize data.

We all agreed, even my son, that no television for a week was a delightful change of pace. But it’s hard to continue. There’s pressure to keep up with the tube, from my son’s friends, from coworkers, and from the promotional ads on TV. I start to feel like I’m missing something. This week is a great reminder of how pleasant life without television can be.

By Marianne Lonsdale

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Marianne, don't give up on it! we did tv turnoff week five years ago and never went back. our rule is no tv or electronics during the week. fridays/sats/suns we can have it on and we look forward to movies together but we hardly watch anything else save for survivor that we tivo. it's been the single best parenting decision i've ever made. give it a go! Laura-Lynne Powell
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