21 March 2011

Addicted to Movies

Yes, I am sorry to say Boo at the tender age of 2 is completely addicted to watching movies.  At first it was just Green Eggs and Ham and Cat in the Hat.  Then we discovered the Eyewitness DVDs at our local library!!!  Now she asks for "uhSHEEN" (Human Machine) "i-a-uhs"(Natural Disasters) and "orssy" (Horses).  She didn't like Skeleton as much.  Birds and Butterfly and Moth were also good ones.  And although I love Dr. Seuss and the slightly crazy songs on the DVDs, I was getting very tired of listening to them.

One thing that I am sure she will NOT be watching is "educational" shows (NOT the Eyewitness DVDs - the ones on PBS, Nickelodeon, and the Disney Channel).  After reading Nurture Shock, which I liked a LOT of (such as the sections on Praise and Self Control and Race and Sleep Deprivation) but Strongly Disagreed with some other points in it (especially the section on Education), I feel really good about not allowing "educational" programming in our home.  I will admit that I was surprised that the researchers "found that Arthur is more dangerous for children than Power Rangers" (p.181) and "The more educational media the children watched, the more relationally aggressive they were."  (p.180) The researchers theorize that this might be because the majority of children's shows are negative most of the time with just a small part (the resolution at the very end) being "positive."  To quote again:

We can imagine educational television might use an initial insult to then teach a lesson about how insults are hurtful, but that never was the case, Schiebe [one of the researchers] found.  Of the 2,628 put-downs the team identified, in only 50 instances was the insulter reprimanded or corrected - and not once in an educational show.  Fully 84% of the time, there was either only laughter or no response at all." (p.182)

That said, I think that Charlie and Lola (at least the first few seasons) is fairly good at modeling positive sibling/child relationships because Charlie and Lola have their differences, but they don't resort to calling each other names over them.

As for what I am watching, right now I am addicted to Pushing Daisies!!!!  The episodes with Wilford Woodruff and Lemuel made me laugh with special glee.  =)  Thanks, Lady Steed!


Th. said...


I'm so glad you decided to pick up Pushing Daisies. It's pretty much the best.

Out of curiosity, what was about the research behind NurtureShock's educational findings that you found less compelling than the other parts of the book?

the romgi said...

I loved the first season of Pushing Daisies! I think the writer's strike really killed the show, though, and it just couldn't recover.

Th. said...


Plus, when they knew they were going to be canceled, they tried to cram too much in to the final episodes.

Sposita said...

Th.: OK. I re-skimmed the Nurture Shock chapter on education and I guess I don't really disagree with most of what they are actually saying. I agree that testing for IQ when the child is a preschooler is ridiculous, especially if they can't get in later at all. I also agree that "gifted" education should be an open system - you stay in if you're up to the standards, you can get in whenever you show you should be there.

BUT I disagree with the notion that "gifted education" can't begin that early, and although they do state that "a kid who blows the top off that test is a bright kid, no question" and generally stays in the top 5%, they don't address how the traditional school environment can actually be very detrimental to these children who are extreme outliers. The Dude has a friend in his current class who is CRAZY smart but because he wasn't identified early, was put through 1st grade and not engaged at his level, now really doesn't like school and isn't a great "student."

AND they mention that children in the CA gifted program do do better by about 36% than the norm, but they don't give CA the credit that they DO wait until 3rd grade for testing (which is the earliest time suggested in this book).

I am sad to hear that Pushing Daisies doesn't stay strong in the 2nd season, but I'll keep watching them and mourn when it does happen. I actually got the Spozo to watch an episode, and he deemed it "cute."

Aaron said...

I appreciated Nurture Shock.

I could rant too long about the problems with the school's approach to early education (making age (grade) the single defining characteristic of a child, engaging at the lowest skill level of the 'grade' while failing to make it more approachable to those who don't fit the narrow academic mold, falling to confirmation bias when measuring results)... but what I don't know is how anyone can say no to Boo. Too cute. I'd let her watch movies too.