Well, television, like it or not, is a part of our lives. As I have written about over and over, I try very hard to keep screen time to one hour or less per day. I do not always succeed, but often I do! In addition to being concerned about the amount of time spent watching, I am of course very picky about what I do allow Captain Adorable to watch. I prefer gentle or educational programming, like Zaboomafoo, Little Bear, and Dinosaur Train. I try to avoid repetitive shows, like Wonder Pets (I have been overruled on this) and always avoid overly commercialized shows, like Dora and its ilk. Captain Adorable has gone through several favorite shows (we watch them via On Demand or Netflix, so no commercials either) and the current favorite is Word World. I think this is a great show for a few reasons (educational and gentle! creative situations and also songs and dancing!) but the biggest reason is because since he started watching it, Captain Adorable's letter recognition has gotten better and faster.
It is also inspiring him to write.
This evening I started to cook dinner while he was watching the second half of his allotted one hour of television (this means 4 episodes and 2 vignettes of Word World). I have seen all the episodes before and I knew the last episode was about fire fighters. When the show was over, Capt. Adorable was fooling around with his chalkboard (I was cooking, so not paying much attention) and asked, "What letter does 'fire' start with?" I said, "f," and soon he asked the second letter (which is when I realised he was writing them down) and the third. There he got a little stuck. I told him from the kitchen that he needed to make a line, go aroudn the corner, and then give it a leg. He was making frustrated noises (and I could not see what he was doing) so I reminded him that an R looks like a P with an extra leg (this is all language I have used before when practicing one-on-one). I thought no more about it till I put dinner on the table and glanced at the chalkboard. There was a perfectly legible FIR! I praised him and said there was an 'e' at the end of FIRE. He promptly added the E.
I know, not a genius and perfectly normal and all that, but I am so proud of his initiative and I have to give the credit to the show he was watching: writing, inspired by tv.