When used correctly and with balance, the TV, as well as an iPad, iPhone, iPod, Kindle or computer are absolutely amazing resources for school. Just like we use the library for research, we use the TV and our iDevices. If you don’t have cable, then streaming netflix is a great thing to consider adding to your homeschool budget.
My husband grew up without a tv. He didn’t have one until he turned 18 and bought a small one for his room. If you are one of those families who don’t have a tv…then great. Mad props to you. But I truly feel that when guarded and monitored, the TV can be a priceless tool. Just because we have a tv doesn’t mean it is on all day long. It is used to supplement our day, not guide it. Now, do we have TV days sometimes? You bet! We love those days of just being lazy and doing nothing…don’t you?! We all need those days every now and then.
I have an iPad, an old iPhone and a computer in our sunroom devoted to the kids’ schooling. My son is actually playing “Math Ninja” right now on the iPad. What little boy wouldn’t want to play a game called “Math Ninja?!” I absolutely let them play other games as well though like Candy Crush and Angry Birds. Even those games are chalked full of reasoning skills, decision making, hand to eye coordination, matching, etc.
The risk is that the kids will ask all day if they can play on the devices or watch tv, and they do ask. So how do you curb all the requests for more screen time? I personally don’t think it is possible. I just simply say “no…you’ve had enough today…go read a book…go play outside.” Do they complain? Sometimes yes sometimes no. But I’m the mom and I get to make the rules.
I would much rather my son play “Math Ninja” then cry over a page of workbook math. Who cares if he’s been on the iPad for an hour…he just learned how multiply fractions (ok, he didn’t really, but maybe one day!)
Do you have any fun apps to recommend for school? Here are our favorites (sorry, no time for links, but you can find them all on itunes and if I remember correctly, they are all free or were on sale for free at the time I downloaded them.)
…and a whole bunch more :)