Aimee, clad in black suit and carrying a gray laptop case, goes to the kitchen. She sees the back of a slim young lady, about 5 feet tall, in blue scrub suit washing the dishes in the sink and says,” Nerissa, iniwan ko yung clothe book ni Princess sq lamesa sa salas. Basahin mo na lang sa kanya mamaya kapag gumising na siya. Huwag kayong manonood ng TV, ha.”
“Opo, Ate,” says Nerissa.
“Tawagan mo na lang ako sa opisina kung may emergency. Nakasulat ang number ko sa harap ng directory,” says Aimee.
“Opo, Ate,” replies Nerissa.
"Maya-maya silipin mo muna si Princess sa kuwarto. Aalis na ako at papasok sa opisina. Huwag mong iiwang mag-isa si Princess lalo na kung gising na siya. Alam mo namang isa at kalahating taon na siya at napakalikot na," says Aimee.
"Opo, Ate," replies Nerissa.
After awhile Nerissa hears the sound in the bedroom, “Waah! Waah! Waah!”
“Ay! Gising na si Princess. Sandali lang Jan. Gising na ang alaga ko,” says Nerissa. She disconnects from the cellphone and runs to the bedroom, picks up Princess from her crib and brings her to the living room.
“Hello, Princess. Good morning! Kakausapin ko lang ang best friend ko. Dito ka muna sa salas at manood ka ng favourite cartoon mo,” says Nerissa as she presses the TV’s remote control.
Nourish your baby’s mind andnot just her physical body. The American Academy of Pediatrics and the Philippine Pediatric Society share the same view that watching television and the use of different electronic gadgets should be regulated in children. Limit television viewing to zero in infants less than two years old. For older children, limit quality programming to one or two hours per day. Television sets should be removed from the bedrooms of infants and children. No gadgets and television viewing should be allowed during meals. Focus on more interactive activities like talking, playing, singing and reading together that will promote proper brain development instead of watching television or playing gadgets.
It is never safe to use television as an “electronic babysitter.” Studies have shown that television impairs vision, dulls the senses, stimulates passive reception and sometimes promotes aggressive and restless behaviour.
Being the parent, you are like a principal and your home is your school. Your caregiver is your faculty member or instructor who will teach your child and guide her on what to watch, hear and read.
A good teacher knows how to feed a student’s hunger for wisdom and knowledge. She needs to discover your child’s innate creativity.
Let your caregiver talk to your baby and tell her stories instead of leaving her alone in front of the television absorbing every unhealthy data from the tube.
Be an informed parent who continues to check and evaluate your caregiver’s role. You provide the tools like books, blocks and stuffed animals to help enhance your child’s intelligence.
Excerpt from 'WANTED: PERFECT YAYA (7 Easy Steps to Equip Your Child's Caregiver)" by Dr. Josephine T.R. Holgado