The overall aim in this study was to investigate time use in Australian preschool children, paying close attention to the types of television programs and videos/DVDs they watch. Ninety-two mothers of preschool children completed five activity diaries, for three typical weekdays and two weekend days. On average, children spent around just over 1 hour per weekday watching television and 30 minutes watching videos/DVDs; on weekends they spent on average 1 hour watching television and the same amount of time watching videos/DVDs. On weekdays, children spent more time watching child informative television; on the weekend they spent more time watching child animated television programs. When not watching television, children were mainly engaged in general play or in outdoor play. Child informative television was associated positively with time spent outdoors and in general and pretend play on weekdays (and for general play also on weekend days), whereas overall television viewing was correlated negatively with reading. Our findings suggest that the content of television programs may play a critical role in the relationship between television and other daily activities.
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