How to raise children as conscious buyers ?

Toony Mum

Consumerism (2)The whining of a child had me turn my head towards a boy, barely 5 years old – lying on his back –erratically flinging his four limbs on the floor. The drama was going on in a supermarket. He was accompanied by two miserable creatures, undoubtedly his parents who were standing by his side and trying to woo him to get up on his legs. After a little tetchy crabby scene by all the characters, Mama finally scooped up the Spiderman toy from the store shelf and shoved it into their trolley. Peace, thus prevailed.

How many times have you witnessed or experienced the same tug-of-war between a child’s relentless persuasion and a parent’s grounded reasoning?

Who won? The little boy? No. The winning trophy belonged to an invisible team of experienced marketing strategists and product designers behind that querulous child’s persuasion. Dr. Dan Cook, Faculty of Advertising and Sociology…

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Why I want mums to be concerned about Cartoons?

how i got successWhy do I write ToonyMum ?

I write because I have love-hate relationship with cartoons. This is a reason but not exactly what motivates me to dedicate a good morsel of my days’ time to dig my teeth into the role of toonymum with gumptions.

Professor Sean Brotherson of Oregon State University says:

“A child’s brain is like a house that has just been built. The walls are up, the doors are hung. Then you go to the store and buy electrical wiring, switches, a fuse box and other electrical supplies, you bring these supplies to the new house and set them on the floor. Will they work? Probably not. You first must string the wiring and hook up all of the connections. This is quite similar to the way our brains are formed.”

https://families.media/cartoons-and-young-children

Lets have a look at some statistics now –

In a research performed by the researcher Kayla Bois & Brad Bushman “Michigan University”, they summed up the cartoon content in our Children Schedules as follows:

2 – 5 years old children watch cartoon 32 hrs. Weekly.

6 – 11 years old children watch cartoon 28 hrs. Weekly.

And they stated that:

71% of 8 – 18 years old has a TV in their rooms.

53% of 7 – 12 years old has no parental monitoring for what being watched on TV.

51% of homes: TV is switched on most of time.

So they are neck-close and we cant avoid them.

And this –

“Children who consistently spend more than four hours per day watching TV are more likely to be overweight” (Ben-Joseph, 2016).

I like their funny hunky dory way and the ease with which a good message can be passed on in non-serious way.

There is lot which can be learned through them, I learned British way of English through Octonauts.

I too switch on the TV for the sake of it and when I need “me-time

Having said this all there is still a lot we can do to control & monitor what flows in.

………and this is why I write toonymum to give  heads up for what is wrong and how can we deal with it.

I want to paddle across following messages to all children and all mums & dads-

1.       Cartoons are fun but fun that is laced with some wisdom and learnings is worth sitting for hours but fun which is surrogacy for violence or vulgarity is what we have to guard ourselves.

2.      Young minds are too subtle to process, funnel & filter what is shown to  in vibrant, dazzling colours, so listen to  mum & dad.

3.      Don’t – Don’t make cartoons your idol or role model, discover your original self and stay unique.

4.      Don’t trust any product just because your favorite toon character is selling that. Read labels, compare cost.

5.      Go out and meet real people more because to fight evil & wrong you don’t have to resort to kicks & punches, use wit & wisdom.

6.      Anything that does not require to flex your mind muscle, is not worth wasting hours. The more you use your brain the better it will get ….. so play games, no not on screen !

7.       Question everything, why, what and how of things you watch and discuss with elders.

8.      Watch you age recommended cartoons. Why ? because you don’t eat grown up’s medicines too.

9.      Remember the good message, because stories help in later life to build perspective and improve understanding , like what Tex said in Cars  “There is whole lot more to racing than just winning” or what Peter Pan said – “All it takes is little faith and trust”incredibles

10.   Research says -Thinking and imagination are of the most factors that affect the functionality of the brain till the age of 12. The early years are important. Don’t feed your mind with junk!

 There was a wise man who said till boat floats on water it is good but when water enters the boat, it drowns.

Choose wisely what you watch.

 

Yours sincerely

ToonyMum

How I Finally Got Success In Limiting The Screen Time Of My Overindulgent Daughter?

Toony Mum

Much to my chagrin, my husband bought an iPad for my daughter on her second birthday. As if the non-stop cartoon network wasn’t enough! I was then working in a 9 to 6 job and my daughter was taken care of by her grandparents – who, if you know Indian grandparents – were raining their mushy slushy love for their grandchild by allowing her to do things ‘her’ way. My weekends were usually spent on running errands. The end result was that my 2-year-old was becoming an expert in video games and a walking encyclopedia on cartoons.

I swear I’m not exaggerating. I’ve had several moments of uneasiness listening to her impeccable knowledge on cartoon genealogy when I wouldn’t even know my great grandfather’s name. My smiles at her gaming feats would diffuse into thin air when she would throw tantrums and make a terrible racket as soon as the…

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Environmental Awareness Must Start Early!

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Our callousness towards nature has started to show its consequences. The sinister smog has swathed our cities and its smutty grip is choking our children with lungfuls of polluted air. If the recent stats are anything to believe then air pollution has caused 9 million deaths so far, which is 16% more than the deaths caused by AIDS.

There is a very short movie running on TV these days in which two children with sunken eyes are sitting over a dining table with their parents who looks equally worn out. They have run out on their oxygen kits and they are being scolded by their mother for not using the oxygen kits frugally. When you watch something like this, a very enervated fear sinks inside. What kind of future are we leaving behind for our children?https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pj1eP7JP1KM

We are moving towards a future where oxygen would be bottled and sold! Something very similar to what happened in Lorax (film), greed of one man named Once-ler destroys every Truffula tree. Ted Wiggin is a little boy who lives in a plastic city where everything is artificial and oxygen is sold in sealed bottles. The story traipses around finding the ‘last seed’ to plant a real tree which can give oxygen free of cost.

I have watched this movie many a times with my little one. It trundles across a very serious message of utmost importance to small viewer i.e. to plant trees, love them and do not take them for granted lest they get guzzled down by greed. We would be left to buy bottled oxygen. Are we the only creatures surviving on oxygen?

There are a few other animated movies which I believe are worth watching with your kids if you want to nurture environmental awareness among them. Here, I give the list of 5 such movies!

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Over the Hedge

This will leave you and your little one rolling over with laughter, jokes are packed in every pixel. It’s a story of a mischievous raccoon and his friends. Ken Fox of TVGuide.com described the movie this way: “A sly satire of American ‘enough is never enough’ consumerism and blind progress at the expense of the environment.”

Upon waking up after hibernation, a group of forest animals discover that a tall hedge has appeared out of nowhere, half their forest is gone, they have little to no food left. They have one option: go over the hedge and get food from the humans!

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Wall.E

What will happen when Earth is nothing but a heap of garbage? WALL-E is the last robot left on Earth. He spends his days tidying up the planet, one piece of garbage at a time. WALL-E, with his habit of picking up everything he finds interesting, lives alone on the planet with a pet cockroach. He has quite a collection of things, from lighters to a working iPod and even a small ring box (without the ring). He even has the last living plant.

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Happy Feet

Happy Feet, the animated film about dancing penguins in the Antarctic. Man’s wasteful ways have endangered the Antarctic and its inhabitants. The movie is full of eye catching sequences and a delight to watch the singing-dancing penguins. This is a story of Mumble who has a terrible singing voice but has talent for something that none of the penguins had ever seen before: tap dancing

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Disney Nature’s Oceans

Though a bit subtler than some of the other films on this list, Oceans still makes an impact. The film explores the underwater world that covers three-quarters of our planet. While it spends much of its time depicting the weird, wonderful and beautiful life forms that the oceans have to offer, the documentary doesn’t miss its chance to show the negative effects human actions can have on wildlife and urges viewers to respect nature.

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Free Willy

The movie is laced with strong environmental messages. It features a young boy who befriends a recently captured orca whale in a local aquarium/amusement park. The boy, Jesse, and the whale, Willy, bond, but Willy is in danger because he doesn’t perform tricks well and therefore doesn’t earn much money for the park. The park owner threatens to kill Willy, so Jesse decides to release the whale into the wild.