Out Of Sight, Out Of Mind: The Attention Span Of A Toddler

Image: Sarah Pinault

When my son was born we swore we wouldn’t use a pacifier. On the second night in hospital, after nursing for two hours straight and 18 hours without a nap (me that is), we heeded the nurse’s words “It’s okay to use a pacifier, you know.” Those four hours of sleep were so worth it.

When he became inter-active a short while later, we swore we wouldn’t let him watch television. We were going to be those parents that followed the warnings of pediatricians everywhere – no TV till two years of age. We ignored the fact that I was a Jungle Book junkie as a child and that my husband’s obsession with Super Grover is as old as he is. I don’t recall when that one went by the way side, but to the way side it went.

By this point we had watched a few Disney movies with him, though he lost interest after ten minutes or so. A cute British cartoon about a family of pigs, Peppa Pig, was our gateway drug. The cartoons were 4 or 5 minutes long and therefore a nice reward for him, a nice quiet few moments of snuggling for me. Then Toy Story 3 entered our lives, then Cars. We relaxed the rule. TV was okay, but no way were we going to allow TV to babysit our son.

Unless he had just thrown up, or one of us had the flu and the other needed a few minutes, or one of us needed the bathroom.

Read more about how Sarah Pinault coped with television and her toddler over at GeekMom.

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