The August issue of the Family FunMagazine came today, and I liked Jennifer King Lindley's "The Great Unplugged Challenge". Looking at the statistics put out by the Kaiser Family foundation showing a child's daily media use averaging now a whopping 7 and 1/2 hours, she makes a great point: that's a lot of time not being used forreading, playing outside, staring up at the clouds, or talking about interesting things -- the staples of our own childhoods. Children do have an amazing resiliency, and the author's experience showed that to be true as her family took a challenge to go unplugged for five days. She was surprised at how quickly her kids' creativity, nourished by free time and quiet seemed to blossom. So that's encouraging.
Nonetheless, I agree with Jennifer and Sarah Davies, author of theUnplugyourkids.comblog, and really the bulk of concerned moms, that it's important to make sure children have plenty of opportunities to check out the endless "reality channels" within oneself. We just need to keep reminding each other of this. And that can be difficult when we're deep into our own media cavern for how many hours each day?!