Putting a TV in your Kid’s Bedroom – Our Experience
Putting a TV in your kid’s bedroom may seem like a good idea, but some things to consider before purchasing. You need to think about the amount of time your child will spend watching TV and whether or not it will interfere with their sleep. You also need to decide whether or not you want your child to have access to TV at all hours of the day.
Our children have had TVs in their bedrooms since they were around 5. It wasn’t a decision we took lightly, and as I have stated before on Mummy Matters, any electronic devices we allow our children to have come with rules and guidelines. More on our rules later . . .
Why you might want to consider putting a TV in your kids bedroom
As a parent, you may ask if having a TV in your kids’ bedrooms is a good idea. There are several things to consider when making this decision.
You might want to consider a TV in your kid’s bedroom because it can provide entertainment on weekends and during school holidays. If your child is bored, having a TV in their room can give them something to do.
Another reason to consider a TV in your kid’s bedroom is that it can be used as a learning tool. There are many educational shows and movies available for kids to watch. They can easily access these programs by having a TV in their room.
It’s no secret that many kids enjoy watching TV. But did you know there are benefits of having a tv in your child’s room? Here are three reasons why it can be beneficial to have a TV in your children’s bedrooms:
- It can be a reward for good behaviour. If your child has been doing well in school or completing their chores, you can allow them to watch an extra half hour of TV as a reward. This will teach them the value of hard work and responsibility.
- It can be used for educational purposes. Many educational shows and movies are available for kids to watch on TV. You can use this as an opportunity to sit down with your child and learn something new together.
- It can provide some much-needed downtime for your child and you or siblings.
Studies have found that having a TV in a child’s bedroom can negatively impact their sleep routine, reduce physical activity and cause them to spend less time reading. It has also been concluded that children with unlimited access to a TV in their bedroom were more likely to have shorter sleep duration and poorer sleep quality.
Do your children ever watch TV to fall asleep?Survey by ReliantDirect.co.uk of over 600 parents
Yes – 44.7%
No – 35.5%
Sometimes – 19.8%
The study also found that children with a TV in their bedroom were more likely to suffer from sleep problems, such as insomnia and night terrors. In addition, the presence of a TV in a child’s bedroom can lead to isolation from family members and friends.
These findings suggest that parents should carefully consider whether or not to allow their child to have a TV in their bedroom. If a child does have a TV in their room, it is important to ensure that it is properly supervised and used in moderation.
How to make it work: tips for setting up a TV in a child’s bedroom
Assuming you would like tips for introducing a television into a kid’s bedroom:
- Start with why. Your child must understand why having a TV in their room is a privilege. Explain that it’s a way to reward good behaviour or grades and comes with certain expectations and rules.
- Set clear limits from the start. Decide how much your child can spend watching TV daily, and stick to it. You may also want to set restrictions on what they can watch—for example, no violent or sexual content.
- Be consistent with enforcing the rules. If you give your child an inch, they’ll take a mile. It’s important to be firm regarding TV time limits and restrictions to stop unhealthy habits from forming. Otherwise, they’ll never learn self-control.
Our Experience of Putting TVs in our Kids’ Rooms
William had his first Tv at around age 5; it was definitely after he had started Primary School. At the time, we didn’t have Sky TV, so his choice of channels was limited; it was used more for watching his favourite DVDs as a treat for good behaviour or if he wanted to play with toys in his bedroom and have some background noise. We observed from this young age how the TV would inspire Will’s imagination during play. He was a HUGE Scooby Doo fan, so he would put one of his favourite DVDs on, get his Scooby Doo figures out and re-enact scenes or play along with the show.
Fast forward to having four children at home, we stuck with the age limit of 5 for their first TV, but again, we had rules and guidelines. With Will, we discovered during his early teens that he was waking up in the middle of the night to watch TV or gaming on his video game console. This showed negative effects on his emotional health. From there, we tightened things further and used a Wi-Fi mesh system to control internet access remotely. Even now that our children are aged 9 to 14, we still have rules around the TV and screen time as follows:
- The TVs are connected to the Internet, which doesn’t turn on until 7 am, so they can’t watch TV through the night (I can also turn off all TV access from my phone if necessary).
- Because TV is streamed via services like Netflix and Amazon Prime, we can ensure that the content they watch is age appropriate. They can only watch Sky on the family and living room TV.
- No TV viewing on school mornings.
- To limit screen time, TVs are off by 10 am on the weekend and not allowed on again until 4 pm.
- No TVs (or screens) for an hour before bed.
- No gaming, computers or mobile phones in the bedroom.
The exception to these rules is if we are watching a movie in the family room as a treat or if the children have earned extra time as a reward for good behaviour, helping around the house or doing well at school.
In conclusion, putting a TV in a kid’s bedroom is a personal decision. Some parents feel comfortable with it, while others do not. It is important to weigh the pros and cons of tv in kids’ bedroom before making a decision. If you decide to put a TV in your child’s room, monitor their viewing habits and set limits on screen time.
This post is in conjunction with Reliant Direct, but all thoughts are my own.