Can you tell me more about the recommended 1 hour media limit?

Posted under Ask the Mediatrician.

Q: When we hear that children should not be exposed to more than 1 hour of screen time per day, does that mean that all media are created equal? For example, are watching a movie, watching an age-appropriate TV show, and playing an interactive children’s website game all the same? What are the concerns about and benefits of each?
Answered by Dr. Michael Rich, the Mediatrician

Research Wrap-Up: Recently Published Studies- October 2, 2009

Posted under Research Blog.

Here is a list of recently published studies on children, media, and health which explore a range of topics: Custers, K. & Van den Bulck, J. (2009).Television viewing, computer game play and book reading during meals are predictors of meal skipping in a cross-sectional sample of 12-, 14- and 16-year-olds. Public Health Nutr., Available Online… Read more »

Is there anything wrong with cutting out electronic media completely?

Posted under Ask the Mediatrician.

Q: My parents didn’t have a TV in the house when I was growing up and I didn’t get a stereo until I was a teenager. We read and played outside and I didn’t think I was deprived as a kid. It seems like what is out there now, in terms of violence, sex, and taking risks, is far worse than when I was a kid. Is there anything wrong with just cutting out electronic media completely from my kids’ lives?
Answered by Dr. Michael Rich, The Mediatrician

Research Wrap-Up: Recently Published Studies-September 25, 2009

Posted under Research Blog.

Here is a list of recently published studies on children, media, and health which explore a range of topics: Jennings, N.A., Hooker, S.D. & Linebarger, D.L. (2009). Educational television as mediated literacy environments for preschoolers. Learning, Media and Technology, (34)3, 229-242. This study describes the production techniques of Between the Lions that contributed to preschooler's… Read more »

Which computer games are good for my 2 year old?

Posted under Ask the Mediatrician.

Q: I’ve introduced my 22-month-old son to a computer program designed for babies that makes shapes and plays a sound every time a button is pushed. Lately, I’ve noticed that he is becoming more thoughtful about it. He used to just bang at the keys, but now he pushes one button at a time and watches what happens on the screen. For his birthday, I’ve been looking for an age-appropriate game that involves more thought. I have found a few games that are marked for 2 years and up, but they seem mostly targeted at kids closer to age 3 than 2. Do you have any suggestions?
Answered by Dr. Michael Rich, The Mediatrician

Is there software I can buy to limit my kids’ computer time?

Posted under Ask the Mediatrician.

Q: I have three sons, ages 8, 5, and 5 (twins) who love to play computer games (Club Penguin, Webkinz, PBS kids.com, and others). I try to limit their screen time to one hour per day, but I know they have been using it for longer than that when they can get away with it. Is there a parent-controlled program I can buy that allows each child to login and have only a limited amount of access per day? Dr. Michael Rich answers this question and others on Ask the Mediatrician.

The Cell Phone License

Posted under Research Blog.

What should kids know about cell phones to be treated as competent members of cyber society? I’d like to suggest the development of a home-based, family administered and supported “cell phone license.“