Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Which is worse...

The other day I went in to our season's pass on Tivo and killed Bakugan, Transformers, The Amazing Spiderman and thought about killing Clone Wars, but then thought twice that AB might miss that one.

Leif has tuned out to the TV. He has absolutely no interest whatsoever in watching TV anymore.

I wish I could say I thought this was a great idea and that instead he was reading or playing outside. But nope.

"Can I play a Wii game mom?"

"Well can I play a game on your phone then?"

"No? Can I play on the computer then?"

He is ALL about the interactive play.

We work hard to rein him in on the Wii... and my phone (which contains his favorite games - Battleship and Uno)... and the computer.

Part of me thinks that the interactive play is better for him then veging on the couch watching TV. But I am actually not convinced.

Sure, playing Wii he is far more active and I do think he is improving his coordination and dexterity. Have I mentioned that the kid stomps me at sword fighting? And on Saturday he ran 2.6 miles in 10 minutes on Wii Fit - that can't be bad for him, right?? I think it has helped his concentration too. (I can't get him to look away when he is playing...) But you know, call me old fashioned, I am just not sure this is the best thing.

Leif is going to have a tendency, like AB and I, to absorb himself in technology. AB and I both enjoy computer games (though neither of us has had an opportunity to play in ages) and before we had kids could waste an entire day conquering the world or ridding it of all evil.

But 5 years old? And do I even admit that Leif knows the parental controls 4 digit code? And not only that but has gone into the Wii store and purchased a game on his own? Technology seems to come easy to him - he uses the word "download" in his sleep. Literally. I have heard him.

We have tried a few different tactics - Wii as reward worked for a little while. Taking away Wii privileges for negative behavior worked as well. If you want Leif to do something it is easy to offer Wii or suggest losing Wii privileges. He jumps like no ones business then.

I remember being in 5th grade and staying in from recess to play Lemonade Stand and Oregon Trail on the computer. I LOVED those games. Loved them. I remember my teacher MAKING me go outside. Yeah, I feel like my teacher.

At church the other day our pastor suggested that interactive entertainment or interactive being is the wave. Expecting people to sit and listen without participation is a cause for decline in the church. As he spoke about this I sat there thinking of Leif... he has caught that wave and is riding it like a pro.

But I don't want him to live in fantasy land.

How to handle this? What is the answer?

No comments: