Around 30 months is when children are old enough to learn from what’s on the screen. They learn best from TV when it’s designed by experts to meet their developmental needs. The following are ways to make TV viewing educational:
· Preview programs before your child watches them.
· Check the TV listings and program reviews ahead of time for programs your family can watch together. Choose shows that foster interest and learning in hobbies and education (reading, science, etc.)
· When picking shows, ask yourself, “Is this developmentally appropriate for her?” Sesame Street, for example is designed for 3-5 year olds, but most of the children watching it are only 16-18 months old. Shows that move from one scene to another quickly aren’t great because they can be disorienting.
· Participate with children. Parents should watch television with their children. Ask and answer questions about what you see (shapes, colors, numbers, letters, emotions, etc.) Parents can discuss program content with their children and can clarify actions and behaviors. You can also help them learn how to process the messages- including the commercials
· For preschoolers examples of well-designed shows include Sesame Street, Blue’s Clues, or Dora the Explorer
For more information on making smart media choices, visit cmch.tv