“Television is used as a babysitter,” much-loved Play School presenter said
Floella Benjamin, best known for presenting Play School on the BBC, has said imported television programmes are dumbing down our children and that some parents are using the TV as a babysitter. Television is affecting children’s lives more than parents, Floella also told the Daily Telegraph.
“Children sit in front of the television for hours and they are having their brains sucked out with no interaction with other children,” Floella said.
“Let’s start caring about kids. Television now has more affect on children’s lives, much more than the parents.
“Some responsible parents will talk to their children but millions of kids won’t be supervised as parents are working and many parents don’t care. The television is used as a babysitter and the children are watching appalling programmes that do not reflect their lives.”
At the start of the year, a House of Lords report showed concern over the rise of imported TV programmes. For children’s shows, there was a drop of 48% in spending on UK productions since 2003. Floella commented that imported shows like High School Musical and Hannah Montana are dumbing down children, “A child’s mind is like a blank canvas. To form an opinion about an unrealistic world – a very bubblegum world of fun, of big smiles and happy endings is not good for our children.
“When parents sit down and see what their children are actually watching, they are shocked at how imported television shows are dumbing down our children.”
Floella also said, “Children are watching imported programmes because we are not satisfying their needs. In this country we have talented writers, musicians, animators who are not making programmes because British children’s programmes have been thrown on the scrap-heap."
Of the 113,000 hours of children’s shows broadcast last year, just 1% were new ones made in the UK.
What does your tot watch? Are they a fan of ‘bubblegum’ TV or do you opt for British-made broadcasts?
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