“I’m on the phone”…. Those four simple words can start World War 3 with my toddler. He uses this opportunity to scream, yell, whine, until I do what he would like, and usually that involves the television. Holding my ground when it comes to boundaries with the television can be hard when I am not busy, it can be near impossible when I am doing something important.
Simple electronic devices can make this boundary a solid steel wall that no one (not even mom) can penetrate. You may already have a parental control timer and not even know it. A parental control timer limits the ability to turn on the television in some fashion. There are two main controls in regard to time:
- It may limit the total amount of time the television is played
- The time of day that the television is available.
One day while reading my Directv user manual I found that this feature was built right into my satellite. Easy as pie… With a little investigation I found that Dish Network also has this feature built in. From what I understand both companies provide this feature only with their upgraded HD satellite receiver. There are also several independent options that will help limit all media use. Some of these are even token based, so instead of earning money, the kids can earn TV time.
The fight is over, I can save money by paying my kids TV tokens instead of allowance. I can explain to my toddler that the TV doesn’t work and needs a rest. I can sleep well at night knowing that I didn’t let my kids watch TV for most of their waking hours.