‘Kids’ News…

My sons in year one at school, for anyone not up with the English system, its 5-6 year olds, they daily watch something called ‘Kids news’, I don’t know which outlet they watch it from but its part of their routine. Thats fine by me. I think children should be exposed to some news and to understand the world is bigger than just their own set of circumstances. However at 6 I still feel this needs to be censored and careful with what is delivered.

Today my son has come home and told me more details about the helicopter crash today than I personally know! He knows someone had a broken leg, and that someone had multiple injuries, and that people died. He knows it was flying in fog and that the lights werent on the tower. He knows that it fell to the ground in a fireball. In the same news bulletin they also saw about the emergency landing a plane did in Japan. Thats two negative pieces of information about flying.

At 6 my sons sensitive. He picks up on everything and over-thinks everything, totally like his mother at that age! And so I know tonight he will dwell on this. There will be more questions. He will then get upset over it. Probably have bad dreams about it and the cycle will repeat for a few days.

I agree with people who say you can’t wrap children in cotton wool. Of course you cant. But I think as parents and in schools they should be aware of how emotionally developed a child is and how much they can handle.  As a parent I hid as much of the recent gun masacre in america from my son as possible. That was until he got up ahead of me one morning, turned the television on which was on BBC and watched the news until I got up. Needless to say he got a great bunch of information about it and we had to have a long chat about the fact that it rarely, if ever, happens in the UK and that he was quite safe to go to school. However if he hadn’t got up ahead of me I would not have approached that subject with him as I felt it would do more harm than good.

I can’t decide whether to approach the headteacher over this or not. I don’t want him excluded from that period of the lesson but I would prefer them to be more aware!

Would love to hear everyone elses thoughts? Should we just expose our children to all the harsh realities of the world? Or censor it? Or protect them completely? 


13 thoughts on “‘Kids’ News…

  1. I would be very interested to know how the teachers discuss the news with the children and think this is something you should take up with the head of the school. It’s good to let children watch the news, but they should watch with an adult who can support them with it and talk through any questions they have. I agree that this is a big issue for him to hear about at 6.

  2. I agree with you. I think they should be more aware of the kids. I think that if a child is goin to watch the news it should be the parents that watch it with them. It makes me sad to think the your 6 yr old will have to bear the weight of what his little mind thinks about all that information. It also makes me mad that the teachers are forcing you to have a conversation that may not be needed or wanted at this point in YOUR child’s life. Bring it up, in the long run it will help you child more than if you don’t. Xx

  3. My daughter is 5 and I know that having that much detail about the helicopter crash would really upset her. Doesn’t sound like that programme is at all suitable for year 1 kids, I say talk to the headteacher!

  4. Each child is different, and each parent is different.

    My son at 5 watches the news happily and will ask questions, but just accepts what happens and carries on. I never want to hide real world things from him, obviously things like ‘adult’ content is different. But with the news, he knows what goes on. He had a snow day today and so watched the bbc news with me about the helicopter crash, and saw the news coverage of the school shooting. He also quite happily will sit and watch CSI or Criminal Minds with me, and it doesn’t upset him.

    But that is my own child. Every child is completely different, and everyone does what is best for their own children. Perhaps sitting down and having a conversation with him about it will help?


  5. It’s a tough one and I agree with you. Whilst children need to learn about news and what’s going on in the world, there are still things that I would like them not to know. They too knew about what happened in America, and with April Jones going missing, but they were only told what we wanted them to hear and in a manner that they would understand without getting worried or scared. Unfortunately, at school you do not have this control (one reason why I am considering home ed!). I think it would be a good idea to talk to the Head or the Class Teacher and ask where abouts the get the info from and perhaps they could show you what they show the kids as you are worried about your son and the ‘news’ he is being shown??

  6. I discuss a lot of what happens in the news with my two who are almost eight and ten. But I do that into way and censor what I feel are unnecessary details. I wouldn’t like to think that the school were making that decision for me.

  7. I think that’s terrible. I don’t even watch the news myself because I find it all terribly depressing. Like a child, it makes me dwell on things and it makes all my fears of the bad things in this world, worse. I prefer to stay wrapped in my naive uninformed and ignorant bliss and I definitely feel that young and impressionable children should be spared from these nightmares. If it was my daughter, I’d tell the school what I think and request my daughter be pulled out of those classes. My view is obviously quite strong and possibly diverse, but that’s what makes our little family happy. As she grows and current affairs become topics for study, I will expose her to relevant parts of the news and censor the detail, but at 5, she already worries about things she hears about. Newsround was never that detailed was it. Xx

  8. I definitely think you should speak to your Head teacher to express how you feel and ask what school policy is and ask that as parents you can be told how to find out what the kids are seeing – it’s about being a partnership together. personally I have watched the news with dd since she was small and I believe in learning together and talking about whatever comes up, but that’s me and I know my child and how to deal with thimgs. e.g. I didn’t approve of the coverage of new town so I talked about it rather than watching coverage.

  9. My daughter is in year 1 and pretty much has no fear. She never has nightmares, watches all sorts of things I would never have been able to handle as a child (even a much older one), is confident and outgoing. However we don’t watch the news at home – or the catastrophes as my husband calls them – as it’s always so depressing. Happy stories don’t sell papers or get people watching that news channel, so we see worse and worse stories reported, in more and more detail. When she watches films on TV that are scary or have death in them, she knows it’s just actors and “make believe”. If I had to start explaining that planes, trains & cars crash, killing people in real life, I’d never get her out of the house.

    I do not feel it’s the role of the school to share such information and I would definitely be against my daughter being a part of this. Especially at a time when we keep hearing there is not enough time in the school day to cover all the essentials of a basic curriculum.

    Fortunately our school is fab and I love everything they do with the kids, but in your shoes I’d talk to the other parents and then approach the head.

    Good luck!

  10. Hello, I agree with you as all children are different and some shouldn’t be subjected to such information at such a young age. I work in primary and we watch the same online channel although I have never seen anything that would make me feel uncomfortable for my class or my own children. I think you should speak to the teacher rather than the head, informally and explain how your child was affected by this information. Feedback is important for us teachers, well I want to know if a parent and certainly a cild is upset by something I have done in class. I hope your child can put these incidents behind him and realise they are rare and he can feel safe in his world.

    1. Sadly at the moment the class teacher is off on sick leave and her supply replacement leaves alot to be desired! My mums an early years coordinator so I have a fair idea of good/bad teachers when I see them and he is clueless!!!

  11. I have to say I’m with you on this one. I know all children are different and where some children would take this kind of information in their stride, others, like mine, would dwell on it and let it play on their mind.

    We are very ‘age aware’ in our house and don’t let Little Bean and Beanie Boy watch the same things on TV as we do Curly (because he’s 11 and they are 4 and 2). Little Bean and Beanie Boy both suffer with nightmares if they have watched anything a little too much on the TV so we were upset with the recent bout of bad weather to find that Little Bean’s school put all the children in the school hall for the lunch period to watch a DVD which we wouldn’t let her watch at home. We didn’t even realise they watched DVDs at school.

    I’d love to know what the headteacher says if you speak to them.

  12. Regardless of whether parents want to expose their children to the harsh realities of life or wrap them in cotton wool, the school shouldn’t be in charge of what the children see.

    If parents want kids to know about that stuff then they should be the ones to show it/discuss it. Not the school!

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