1. Larissa says:

    July 1, 2010 at 8:20 am

    Hi Martha! I am not far into this book, but am now inspired to get at it! In the interim, would you mind sharing what types of tv shows are more likely to cause aggression? I've just started putting Kai in his high-chair in front of a Baby Einstein video for the sheer necessity of being able to cook our meals without him crying and hanging on my legs the whole time. The refrigerator magnets and music & lights activity table in the kitchen are no longer holding his interest. I've heard not so great things about Baby Einstein videos, but they give me a good 20 min to cook & clean-up, which is huge for me to finally have this kind of short-term distraction that keeps him engaged & peaceful for a bit. I'm not interested in getting him to watch a lot of tv at all, in fact, I'd prefer he watched none, but I'm finding that I have to make some concessions in this area since I just really need him to be happily occupied a couple times a day while I am in the kitchen. I don't have a learning tower yet, either, but maybe one day I will, finances permitting. Also, what do you think about DVDs like Planet Earth for a toddler?

    • Martha says:

      July 1, 2010 at 10:38 am

      Hey Larissa,

      The book doesn't give very many specific examples. But the shows they found to trigger relational aggression were certain educational shows, typically on PBS. The shows they found to be problematic were "lesson" shows. Ones that showed children being mean to each other for most of the show and then end with a resolution. But they found that the poor behavior was what the kids remembered, instead of the lesson.

      Just knowing that has made me view children's television in a whole new light. Although, I've always found those kind of shows annoying anyway. 🙂

      We do allow TV. We find ourselves sticking with the same program for a while. We started Annika on some learning videos when she was about Kai's age. Here's a post where I write about them. (It's on my blogger site. I'll eventually migrate these posts over here.)

      I really liked these videos. They are super simple. They aren't TV shows. They are simply done. And they aren't overly commercial. We never used the Baby Einstein videos. I don't know that those are necessarily bad. I just think that people were angry to find out that they weren't actually making their children smarter like they marketed them.

      We tried out the Planet Earth videos at Dawn's recommendation, but Annika never paid much attention to them. *I* liked them though. 🙂

      Right now Annika is super duper into Sesame Street. I really like SS for a variety of reasons, but I've also found very little relational aggression. Kai is probably a little young for SS, but not for long.

  2. says:

    July 2, 2010 at 2:28 pm

    I keep hearing how great this book is, but this is the first time I've gotten specifics — which I, too, love. You might be getting an email soon in my classic interrogation mode, lol! Thank you for sharing this, you wonderful, smart, with-it Mama! =)

  3. Martha says:

    July 6, 2010 at 5:31 am

    Margaret, yes, if you don't read any other parenting book, you should read this one. Of course, the other ones have their place. I recommend starting before you have children. It takes time to develop a parenting philosophy and the further ahead of the game, the better prepared you will be.

    Connie, you should definitely read it. I can try to answer all your questions, but the book will do a much better job. Of course, I always love your e-mails, soooo, ask away!

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