Saturday, 17 October 2009

TV in School

Here is one of those debates where I find myself polling every parent within a 10mile radius.
DH is perched soundly on the other side. Of course, why else would I enlist everyone I can find, if it isn't to persuade DH to change his position, sheerly based on peer pressure?

Like most heated debates, not all the facts are clear. But that will not stop us. Oh no. It will not.

This is the issue at hand:
Each Friday, Babydoll's first-year class watches television. Television in her school class. You read it right. And we're not talking National Geographic or Big Bird reciting his ABCs. It's been the fun motion-picture movies such as Cars and Toy Story. From her description, the time slot is half a movie long: 30 maybe 45 minutes.

Anyone else have an immediate knee-jerk reaction to this?

School is for educating, not entertaining. Am I correct?

I have enough of a hard time getting my daughters out from in front of the television at home, really does it have to be ON during school hours?

Last year, Babydoll had an incredibly high number of no school days--when researched it was revealed that her teacher's spouse was terminally ill. For this I understand.
Could this next teacher be so similarily unfortunate? I might be persuaded if this was the reason for the babysitter-in-a-tube.

DH feels they are only kids and even teachers need the break. I fully, wholeheartedly disagree. For six hours a day they are meant to be enriched. Take recess, take break, take whatever, but for goodness sake, taking the TV route irks me.



Caryn said...

I agree with you TV in school to watch some historic event - sure. To watch Toy Story - no. Maybe once a year or so after a holiday party and before dismissal when resuming work would be cruel but even then there are so many other worthy activities that would also be fun. Write a story, read a story, draw a picture, play a game. These things are fun to kids and require some thought. As to the teachers deserving a break? I wish I could tell my boss we were going to watch TV for a half hour every Friday!

Erinness said...

Totally agree here. Natalie was shown movies in PRESCHOOL? Um, that was only three hours a day, you can't get through that?

I think TV can be a great educational experience to complement lessons and show things that are too hard for young minds to grasp w/out visual cues. But Toy Story et al, would bug me too. If it's really just for the teachers to have a break, come on then, there are so many great educational videos out there for kids of all ages, you can't pick up a couple from the library?

And yes, my kids love tv at home too, and always ask for just one more show when the alloted time is over. I almost always deny this request and after a few minutes of grumbling, it is forgotten.

Yikes, what to do when they start wanting all the cool electronic devices???

Cherrie said...

I agree completely that fun TV has no place in public school. I wanted my kids to go to school to learn. I resented the fact that the school was stealing one of my opportunities to have fun with my children. One of our treats was to buy a new movie when it came out(we didn't have regular TV programs)and spend an evening with food treats, blankets and watch something we had anticipated. One time the school decided(without informing parents) to purchase the video and show it to all the elementary kids one morning. Talk about ruining our anticipation. Sitting in front of a TV screen as a reward at school should not be allowed.
So I vote with you - no fun TV in school. Stick to your guns. : )

Just another Cherrie

Micki said...

I agree with you unless it was a reward for some project that they completed, Then I think it is ok. I can see how you feel though!


Sew Create It - Jane said...

Whoa...EVERY Friday? At my DD2's school they might watch a film once a term, but certainly not every Friday. I can't imagine that a school can't think of a more creative use for the time. Like what about doing art on every Friday? or group games in the hall or outside? I know teachers have PPA time which takes place during school hours, but surely the answer isn't to put children in front of a box during that time.

If the school doesn't listen to your objections, then move onto the governors or even Ofsted.

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Janet said...

I totally agree with you- school is not babysitting but education!

Anonymous said...

We had "Fun Fridays" every Friday... We paid for a full day of kindergarten. Granted -- he can read and write, knows the parts of a plant (i.e. "stamen") but....Working internally at a US school district, I know first hand, teachers are paid to teach for the day and they are paid for a "prep period." They get a "duty free" lunch break as well. If you layer on the fact that the teacher has parent volunteers and a paid Teachers Aide (to correct papers etc.) plus the potential copyright problem of showing the film....the scales tip, making showing a fun film in the classroom unacceptable.

Liz said...

Agree with you 100%