I remember, when we were small, the only exposure I had to any kind of cartoons was much later in life. It may have been when I was in the third or fourth standard. The first rhyme I have known and loved my whole life was ‘lakdhi ki khathi’ played on the tape recorder, thanks to my mother.
Today being a mother myself, I have many modes of entertainment for my toddlers. They are easily available to me. I can easily get away with playing cartoons on the idiot box so that my kids are busy and I get to do my daily chores. Or I can give them my cellphone for rhymes.
However, the big debate is, should it be preached at all? What is the harm? Why can’t a mother do it and get some peace of mind? Does it make any difference in a child reaching his milestones and the mental/physical development of toddlers?
According to many paediatrics, screen time is a big no-no. It does no good for small children below 3 years. It affects their motor skills, brain development, and toddlers get addicted to this habit. One hour of screen time is good as a family activity for toddlers over two years of age. But any dependency on screen time, to feed the child, for example, is harmful. It is also said that it can delay speech development.
I have seen babies/toddlers who get zero screen time as well. But every baby, every mother, and every condition is different. Only a mother can decide the best for her baby.
In my opinion, anything in excess is harmful and should be avoided. Anything that leads to addiction is bad. The content being shown also needs scanning and adult supervision.
Limited and controlled exposure to screen time can be fun and exciting and also aid learning in babies.
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