More Props for Dora

So tonight I turned on an episode of Dora for Annabelle to watch while eating her dinner. The episode is titled "ABC Animals", and in the episode Dora sings the ABCs once (I think... maybe she does it another time later). She sings ABCs right off the bat and when she started singing Annabelle sung along! She only got through A-B-C-D clearly, then it was some mumbling for "E-F-G", but still. She definitely isn't singing the whole thing yet (although when I freaked out and rewound it to hear her sing it again, I paused it to see if she'd sing the rest and she stopped at G, but when I sang "H-I-J-K", she again did a mumbling singing thing for "L-M-N-O" then said "P" clear as day), but it's a start toward another thing that I neglected to try to teach her because I thought she was too young, but Dora picked up the slack! BTW, since I've never seen this episode until tonight, I assume Annabelle has only seen it a couple of times at most.

This, on top of the counting in English and Spanish, is just another thing that proves to me that TV is NOT evil for children. I've always thought that it's all in how you use it. One of those things that you seem to hear lots of while reading all of the books and websites to prepare yourself for parenthood is about the evil of television. My personal belief is that it's only evil if you use it strictly as a babysitter and as a replacement for interacting with your child. If you use it as a tool for communication and learning, I think it's a blessing and can be very educational. From the time that Annabelle started watching her Baby Einstein videos, I've watched the shows with her and named or talked about the things that she sees. That communication seems to make her understand what she sees much faster and better. I read books with her too, but for a long time she wouldn't sit still long enough to really get anything out of them. Even after she started paying attention to books, I think that seeing things in a moving dimension makes them more real and interesting to her. She loves animals and was able to identify many animals very early on, and I really believe that seeing them on TV in addition to in the books and on flashcards made a difference. I'm not saying that I never use the TV as a babysitter (especially now that Corgan is here and I have to entertain him too), but I believe that as long as I don't abuse it and keep the shows mildly educational (Annabelle is getting really into Animal Planet lately), TV is definitely a good addition to our lives.


Angelle said...

I am totally on the bandwagon with you. I used to feel guilty for letting Leah watch so much TV, but when I see the things she gets out of it I don't feel so bad. She has learned the Spanish from Dora, animals from Diego, logic from Blue's Clues, etc. As long as you pay attention to the programming, I think we are okay.

Angelle said...

We need more Mommy's Favorites Posts. I need recommendations for some pregnant friends.