16th February 2010
Northern MAT urges play not TV for young children
THE Northern Multi Agency Team is hosting a week of seminars to demonstrate how parents can encourage children to play instead of watching television.
The government agency is one of five regional MATs established last year to bring about closer co-operation between agencies working with families and children.
Its first campaign highlights the benefits of interactive play with children, especially pre-schoolers.
Northern MAT Team Leader Tracy Power explained:
‘The very clear message coming from government agencies in the UK and here is that the effects of children watching too much television can be significant and long lasting. This campaign aims to address that, both by showing how some children exposed to too much television can have difficulty socialising and also by demonstrating how parents can help their children play and take part in age appropriate fun activities that don’t cost money.’
The Northern MAT has published a leaflet ‘Children and TV – a Did You Know Guide’, which will be distributed to all parents of children at the schools hosting the seminars, as well as being available on the team’s website:
The play seminars will be staged in the following schools on these dates:
Each play session runs from 3pm until 3.30pm with the opportunity during and afterwards for people to have informal discussions with MAT team members on the sessions or any other issues in relation to children and families. All parents and members of the local community are welcome to take part.
Additionally, anyone in the north is welcome to find more information about the Northern MAT at a display on Monday morning (February 22) at Ramsey Town Hall.
Tracy Power added:
‘From talking to parents and teachers, we are finding that often people are not aware of the impact of having television on in the background when young children are in the house. The aim of both the leaflet and the seminars is to provide some examples of no cost activities and reinforce the message about the value that children get from that.’
Anyone who would like more information about the Northern MAT or the forthcoming seminars can contact Tracy via email: NorthernMAT@gov.im or by phone (07624) 460920.