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It Was Much More Than A Hunch

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My kids have been watching a lot of classic tv lately. It started when we went on our summer road trip last month. We needed something for the kids to watch while in the car for hours, but something that a) we haven’t seen a million times – as much as I love Star Wars, we all needed a bit of a break and b) wasn’t going to be super annoying for the hubs and I to listen to – like Rocky and Bullwinkle, which my kids love, but drives me a little bonkers.

My husband and I chose The Brady Bunch and The Partridge Family to start with. Why did we choose these? Well, first of all, a friend of ours said that his daughters were watching The Brady Bunch and loving it. Secondly, it’s something we knew would be safe for the kids. Finally, we loved it as kids, and hadn’t seen them in YEARS, so it might not be so bad.

Immediately, my husband and I were taken back to our youth, watching these shows as kids on our old cathode ray tvs that had UHF and VHF. We remembered every episode like we’d just watched it yesterday, and it was such a kick to see our own kids laughing their heads off when Tiger ruins the wedding, or when the poor dog gets FOUR baths to try to keep Jan’s allergies at bay.

And how many shows teach us about honesty?

We don’t let our kids watch much tv. As kids who watched plenty of tv when we were young, it might seem odd, but honestly, tv isn’t the same as it was when we were kids.

How many sitcoms can kids even watch these days?

How many shows are there without sex or mature situations?

How many shows are there that include some sort of lesson on how to be a better person/sister/brother? That teach kids that girls can do anything boys can do? That teaches kids not to dump their brother from their singing group just because his voice is changing? (Well, okay, maybe that one doesn’t apply in some situations.)

Well, you say, there’s Nickelodeon and Disney.

I suppose. But honestly we watched a lot of little kid programming on those stations when they were smaller, and I haven’t delved into any of those shows. Looking at their websites for the show line-up, nothing looks like anything I’d be happy to sit through. I suppose I should give it a chance, but I’m in no hurry.

See, I’m fine with my kids NOT watching a ton of tv. I’m fine with them NOT watching all the commercials telling them what toy to ask their parents for. I’m fine with them not wanting to go to a Jonas Brothers concert, or wearing Hannah Montana shirts.

Call me overprotective, or persnickety, or lazy, I don’t care. I’m enjoying watching my kids discover sweet, mostly innocent shows like these. I love that they know all the words to both theme songs, and sing along in the car to the Partridge Family.

They’ll grow up fast enough as it is. I’m happy to let them watch some sugary-sweet tv that give us messages like be honest, don’t be jealous, and do your best. C’mon, get happy!

Do you think tv today has more to offer for kids and young families?

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