Over the winter months and particularly during my first three months of pregnancy, the TV has been getting a decent workout. This has been especially true in the early mornings before we have been able to peel ourselves out of bed to entertain Miss M. As I begin to feel a little more energetic, and as the sun starts peeking into our windows earlier, the time has come to address the issue of early morning screen time.
Now, we could have gone all strict and just told M that she "wasn't allowed" to watch it. This in turn would have guaranteed a daily argument and copious (almost) four year old "mama guilt trips" outlining in great detail and volume how unfair life is for this well nourished, well loved, admittedly privileged little girl.
We decided to avoid this path and simply ask that on week days (IE. days that don't start with S) M get herself completely ready for her day before switching on the TV. We have not said she cannot watch TV in the mornings, we just ask that she is all ready before she does. This means she needs to do the following tasks;
1. Make herself breakfast and eat it (and dishes in the sink)
2. Get out her clothes for the day
3. Get herself dressed and put last night's pull-up in the bin
4. Put her dirty clothes in the basket
5. Put on socks and shoes
6. Clean teeth
7. Brush hair
8. Quick tidy of bedroom
How has this gone for us??
The first day we suggested this, she ran around madly so she could get everything done and plonk herself down in front of the telly as quickly as possible.
Day two was similar, however we noticed that the TV went on later.
Day three (yesterday) M stayed in her PJs and played in her room until 9am, after which she completed all the tasks and sat down to watch something at 10am.
This morning she has been awake since 7am, she came in for a cuddle in our bed for an hour, Got up, made and ate breakfast, went outside to water her plants (which we planted two days ago), came back inside and started getting dressed for her gym class which starts at 10am. She has not mentioned the TV once.
I am so glad we have not spent the morning arguing like I am SURE would have happened had J & I just pulled rank and said NO TV IN THE MORNINGS!