Member Login
Follow Us

How Much Television Is Your Child Really Watching?

Michelle Mirizzi • MS, Registered Dietitian • Apr 16, 2012

With today's hundreds of television channels, kids can easily be glued to the TV for hours.  If kids are watching TV then they are not being active, probably snacking on less nutritious foods, and being influenced by commercials that are aimed at children to affect their buying habits.  If you add in the time children are playing video games, on the computer and using ipods, kids can really be spending a lot of time sitting down.

The American Academy of Pediatrics has some recommendations regarding screen time and children.  Screen time includes television, video games, computer time, ipod and ipads.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends:

  • children under 2 years should not have any screen time and older children should be limited to 2 hours a day.
  • parents create an electronic-media-free environment in children’s bedrooms

Limiting TV and total screen time encourages children to balance their day with active play, creativity and time talking with family.


Facts About Television Viewing

You may be surprised to learn these facts*:

  • Number of 30-second commercials seen in a year by an average child: 20,000
  • Number of minutes per week that parents spend in meaningful conversation with their children: 38.5
  • Number of minutes per week that the average child watches television: 1,680
  • Percentage of children ages 6-17 who have TV's in their bedrooms: 50
  • Percentage of day care centers that use TV during a typical day: 70
  • Hours per year the average American youth spends in school: 900 hours
  • Hours per year the average American youth watches television: 1500
  • Percentage of Americans that regularly watch television while eating dinner: 66










See All Our Nutrition Articles


Written by Michelle MirizziWritten on Apr 16, 2012Last updated on Apr 13, 2015




The photos displayed on this website were purchased legally from,, and All clipart displayed on this website is the exclusive property of