Breaking the TV Habit

Raise a Media-Savvy Kid

Two Boys Holding TV Remote Control

Aimee Herring

It's unlikely you'll get your child to stop watching TV completely, but you can help him become an informed viewer. One way to do that is to teach him to be critical of the many advertisements he'll see. Try these tactics.

  • Play "spot the commercials." Ask your child to tell you the difference between a television program and an advertisement. Discuss what the marketers do to make products seem attractive.
  • Give him a reality check. When you watch a show together, talk about whether the events could happen in the real world. If not, ask him to explain why not.
  • Practice "talk back." Encourage your child to speak directly to the TV when he sees something he disagrees with in a program or spots a false commercial claim.

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Copyright ? 2006. Reprinted with permission from the April 2006 issue of Parents magazine.

April 2006 issue of Parents magazine.

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